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THE MEXICAN CONSTITUTION OF 1917 

COMPARED WITH 

THE CONSTITUTION OF 1857 



Translated and Arranged 

by 

H. N. BRANCH, LL.B. 

With a Foreword 
by 
L. S. ROWE, Ph.D., LL.D. 




PHILADELPHIA 

The American Academy of Political and Social Science 

1917 



Copyright, 1917, by 

American Academy op Political and Social Science 

All rights reserved 



EUROPEAN AGENTS 

England: P. S. King & Son, Ltd., 2 Great Smith St., Westminster, London, S. W. 
France: L. Larose, Rue Soufflot, 22, Paris. 

Germany: Mayer & Mtiller, 2 Prinz Louis Ferdinandstrasse, Berlin, N. W. 
Italy: Giornale Degli Economisti, via Monte Savello, Palazzo Orsini, Rome. 
Spain: E. Dossat, 9 Plaza de Santa Ana, Madrid, 



FOREWORD 



The widespread interest in Mexican affairs has led the Editorial 
Council of the Academy to arrange for the early publication of the 
Mexican Constitution adopted at the recent Constitutional Con- 
vention held in Queretaro. In a sense this publication supplements 
the special volume issued by the Academy in January last on 
"The Purposes and Ideals of the Mexican Revolution." 

Since the first movement for independence from the mother 
country in 1810, Mexico has passed through an extraordinary con- 
stitutional development. The idea of a Republican form of govern- 
ment made its way but slowly amongst the founders of Mexican 
independence. Between 1810 and 1824 the opinion of the country 
wavered between a constitutional monarchy and a republic. It is 
true that the earliest Mexican Constitution— that adopted in Apat- 
zingan by the first Constitutional Convention — provided for a 
republican form of government with an Executive composed of 
three persons elected by the National Congress. Amongst the 
members of this triumvirate, a system of rotation in office was 
established under which each exercised the powers of Chief Execu- 
tive during a consecutive period of four months. 

This Constitution was regarded as provisional. As soon as the 
struggle for independence was over, the leaders planned to call 
another convention for the purposes of effecting the final organiza- 
tion of the country. During the period between 1815 and 1857, the 
country was torn by internal strife and almost every conceivable 
form of Constitutional systems was tried, ranging from a republican 
triumvirate to the imperial system of Iturbide. 

The development of Federalism in Mexico stands in marked 
contrast with the political evolution of the United States. In 
Mexico, federalism meant the sub-division of what had been, under 
Spanish rule, a centralized, unified system; in the United States, 
the establishment of a federal system signified a closer union 
between separated political units. In spite of the adoption of 
a federal system by Mexico in 1857, the highly centralized traditions 
of Spanish rule perpetuated themselves and finally resulted, under 



iv Foreword 

the Diaz administration, in the complete subordination of the 
individual states to the national government. 

The leaders of the revolutionary movement against the Diaz 
regime were convinced that the Constitution of 1857 had been used 
by self-seeking politicians for personal ends and that its provisions 
had contributed toward the domination of the country by a self 
constituted oligarchy. It is not surprising, therefore, to find radical 
changes in the Constitution of 1917. The revolutionary leaders, 
headed by Venustiano Carranza, hold that the avowed purposes of 
the revolutionary movement, namely to secure for the masses of the 
Mexican people better economic and social conditions, must be incor- 
porated into the organic law and it is their hope that thereby the 
country will be protected against a possible reactionary movement. 
To what extent these hopes will be realized, the future alone can 
determine. 

The Academy is under obligation to Mr. H. N. Branch for his 

admirable translation of the Constitution of 1917. His painstaking 

effort has also made it possible for the Academy to place before its 

members the illuminating comparison between the Constitutions of 

1857 and 1917. 

L. S. Rowe. 

University of Pennsylvania. 

May, 1917. 



PREFACE 



In this translation, the effort has been made to use terms famil- 
iar to the English-speaking world, e.g., "House of Representatives," 
"Attorney General," "impeachment," etc., even though such 
phrases do not always connote precisely the same thing in the Mexi- 
can constitutional system as in that of the United States. Any 
attempt to coin new and strained English ter.ms would be confusing. 

The substantial innovations introduced into the 1917 text are 
shown in italics, while the important omissions from the 1857 text 
are set in black face type. 

Acknowledgment is made to Jose" Ignacio Rodriguez, ex- 
Chief Translator and Librarian of the Pan American Union, for his 
rendering of the 1857 constitution, from which the present version 
of this document was largely drawn. 

H. N. Branch. 
The Sorrento, Washington, D. C. 
March, 1917 



MEXICAN CONSTITUTION OF 1917 COMPARED WITH 
CONSTITUTION OF 1857 



CONSTITUTION OF 1857 CONSTITUTION OF 1917 

Preamble 

In the name of God and by the 
authority of the Mexican people. 

The representatives of the dif- 
ferent States, of the District and 
of the Territories which compose 
the Republic of Mexico, called 
upon by the provisions of the 
Plan proclaimed in Ayutla the 
first of March, eighteen hundred 
and fifty-four, amended in Acap- 
ulco the eleventh day of the 
same month and year, and by the 
call issued the seventeenth of 
October, eighteen hundred and 
fifty-five, to convene for the 
purpose of framing a constitu- 
tion for the nation and making it 
a popular representative, demo- 
cratic republic, exercising the 
powers with which they are 
vested, do hereby comply with 
the requirements of their high 
office, by decreeing the following 
political Constitution of the 
Mexican Republic, on the inde- 
structible basis of its legitimate 
independence, proclaimed the 
sixteenth of September, eighteen 
hundred and ten, and consum- 
mated the twenty-seventh of 
September, eighteen hundred and 
twenty-one. 



[1] 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
Title I 

SECTION I 

Of the Rights of Man 

Article 1. The Mexican peo- 
ple recognize that the rights of 
man are the basis and the object 
of social institutions. Conse- 
quently they declare that all the 
laws and all the authorities of 
the country must respect and 
maintain the guarantees which 
the present constitution grants. 

Art. 2. In the Republic all 
are born free. Slaves who set 
foot upon the national territory 
shall recover, by this act alone, 
their freedom, and enjoy the 
protection of the law. 

Art. 3. Instruction is free. 
The law shall determine what 
professions shall require licenses 
for their exercise, and what re- 
quisites are necessary to obtain 
said licenses. 



Art. 4. Every one is free to 
engage in any honorable and use- 
ful profession, industrial pur- 
suit, or occupation suitable to 
him, and to avail himself of its 
products. The exercise of this 
liberty shall not be hindered 
except by judicial sentence when 



1917 
Title I 

CHAPTER I 

Of Personal Guarantees 

Article 1. Every person in 
the United States of Mexico shall 
enjoy all guarantees granted by 
this Constitution; these shall nei- 
ther be abridged nor suspended ex- 
cept in such cases and under such 
conditions as are herein provided. 1 



Art. 2. Slavery is forbidden 
in the United States of Mexico. 
Slaves who enter the national 
territory shall, by this act alone, 
recover their freedom, and enjoy 
the protection of the law. 

Art. 3. Instruction is free; 
that given in public institutions of 
learning shall be secular. Pri- 
mary instruction, whether higher 
or lower, given in private institu- 
tions shall likewise be secular. 

No religious corporation nor 
minister of any religious creed 
shall establish or direct schools of 
primary instruction. 

Private primary schools may be 
established only subject to official 
supervision. 

Primary instruction in public 
institutions shall be gratuitous. 

Art. 4. No person shall be 
prevented from engaging in any 
profession, industrial or com- 
mercial pursuit or occupation of 
his liking, provided it be lawful. 
The exercise of this liberty shall 
only be forbidden by judicial 

1 See Art. 29. 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
such exercise infringes the rights 
of a third party, or by executive 
order, issued in the manner speci- 
fied by law, when it offends the 
rights of society. 



Art. 5. No one shall be com- 
pelled to render personal serv- 
ices without due compensation 
and without his full consent, ex- 
cepting labor imposed as a 
penalty by judicial decree. 

Subject to the conditions set 
forth in the respective laws, only 
military service shall be obliga- 
tory; and municipal service, 
service in connection with elec- 
tions, and jury service shall be 
obligatory and without compen- 
sation. 

The State shall not permit any 
contract, covenant, or agree- 
ment to be carried out having 
for its object the abridgment, 
loss or irrevocable sacrifice of 
the liberty of man, whether by 
reason of labor, education or 
religious vows. 

The law, therefore, does not 
recognize, nor consent to the 
establishment of, monastic or- 
ders, of whatever denomination 
or for whatever purpose contem- 
plated. Nor shall any person 
legally agree to his own pro- 
scription or exile. [As amended, 
June 10, 1898.} 



1917 
order when the rights of third 
persons are infringed, or by ex- 
ecutive order, issued under the 
conditions prescribed by law, 
when the rights of society are 
violated. No one shall be de- 
prived of the fruit of his labor 
except by judicial decree. 

Each State shall determine by 
law what professions shall re- 
quire licenses, the requisites to 
be complied with in obtaining 
the same, and the authorities 
empowered to issue them. 

Art. 5. No one shall be com- 
pelled to render personal serv- 
ices without due compensation 
and without his full consent, 
excepting labor imposed as a 
penalty by judicial decree, which 
shall conform to the provisions of 
clauses I and II of Article 128. 

Only the following public serv- 
ices shall be obligatory, subject 
to the conditions set forth in the 
respective laws : military service, 
jury service, service in municipal 
and other public elective office, 
whether this election be direct or 
indirect, and service in connec- 
tion with elections, which shall 
be obligatory and without com- 
pensation. 

The State shall not permit any 
contract, covenant or agreement 
to be carried out having for its 
object the abridgment, loss or 
irrevocable sacrifice of the lib- 
erty of man, whether by reason 
of labor, education or religious 
vows. The law, therefore, does 
not permit the establishment of 
monastic orders, of whatever 
denomination, or for whatever 
purpose contemplated. 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



Art. 6. The expression of 
ideas shall not be the subject 
of any judicial or executive in- 
vestigation, unless it offend good 
morals, impair the rights of 
third parties, incite to crime or 
cause a breach of the peace. 

Art. 7. Freedom of writing 
and publishing writings on any 
subject is inviolable. No law 
or authority shall have the right 
to establish censorship, require 
bond from authors or printers, 
nor restrict the liberty of the 
press, which shall be limited only 
by the respect due to private 
life, morals, and public peace. 
Cases of offenses committed 
through the public press shall 
be tried by the competent courts 
of the Union, the States, the 



191 7 

Nor shall any person legally 
agree to his own proscription or 
exile, or to the temporary or per- 
manent renunciation of the exer- 
cise of any profession or indus- 
trial or commercial pursuit. 

A contract for labor shall only 
be binding to render the services 
agreed upon for the time fixed by 
law and shall not exceed one year 
to the prejudice of the party ren- 
dering the service; nor shall it in 
any case whatsoever embrace the 
waiver, loss or abridgment of any 
political or civil right. 

In the event of a breach of such 
contract on the part of the party 
pledging himself to render the 
service, the said party shall only 
be liable civilly for damages aris- 
ing from such breach, and in no 
event shall coercion against his 
person be employed. 

Art. 6. [Identical] 



Art. 7. Freedom of writing 
and publishing writings on any 
subject is inviolable. No law or 
authority shall have the right 
to establish censorship, require 
bond from authors or printers, 
nor restrict the liberty of the 
press, which shall be limited 
only by the respect due to pri- 
vate life, morals and public 
peace. Under no circumstances 
shall a printing press be seques- 
trated as the corpus delicti. 

The organic laws shall pre- 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
Federal District or the Territory 
of Lower California, according 
to penal law. [As amended, May 
15, 1888.] 



Art. 8. The right of petition, 
exercised in writing in a peaceful 
and respectful manner, is invio- 
lable; but in political matters 
only citizens of the Republic may 
exercise it. To every petition 
an answer shall be given in writ- 
ing, in the form of a decision, by 
the official to whom it may have 
been addressed, and the said 
official shall be bound to make 
the petitioner acquainted with 
the result. 



Art. 9. No one shall be de- 
prived of the right peaceably to 
assemble or to come together for 
any lawful purpose; but only 
citizens 2 shall be permitted to 
exercise this right for the purpose 
of taking part in the political 
affairs of the country. No armed 
assembly shall have the right to 
deliberate. 



2 See Arts. 34 and 35 for definition 
and prerogatives of citizenship. 



1917 
scribe whatever provisions may 
be necessary to prevent the 
imprisonment, under pretext of a 
denunciation of offenses of the 
press, of the vendors, newsboys, 
workmen and other employees 
of the establishment publishing 
the writing denounced, unless 
their responsibility be previously 
established. 

Art. 8. Public officials and 
employees shall respect the exer- 
cise of the right of petition, pro- 
vided it be in writing and in a 
peaceful and respectful manner; 
but this right may be exercised 
in political matters solely by 
citizens. 

To every petition there shall 
be given an answer in writing by 
the official to whom it may be 
addressed, and the said official 
shall be bound to inform the 
petitioner of the decision taken 
within a brief period. 

Art. 9. The right peaceably 
to assemble or to come together 
for any lawful purpose shall not be 
abridged; but only citizens shall 
be permitted to exercise this right 
for the purpose of taking part in 
the political affairs of the coun- 
try. No armed assembly shall 
have the right to deliberate. 

No meeting or assembly shall 
be deemed unlawful, nor may it 
be dissolved, which shall have for 
its purpose the petitioning of any 
authority or the presentation of 
any protest against any act, pro- 
vided no insults be proffered 
against the said authority, nor 
violence resorted to, nor threats 
used to intimidate or to compel 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



Art. 10. Every one has the 
right to possess and carry arms 
for his safety and legitimate de- 
fense. The law shall designate 
what arms are prohibited, and 
the punishment to be incurred 
by those who carry them. 



Art. 11. Every one has the 
right to enter and leave the Re- 
public, to travel through its 
territory and change his resi- 
dence without necessity of a letter 
of security, passport, safe con- 
duct or any other similar re- 
quirement. The exercise of this 
right shall be subordinated to 
the powers of the judiciary, in 
the event of civil or criminal 
responsibility, and to those of 
the executive, in so far as relates 
to the limitations imposed by law 
in regard to emigration, immi- 
gration, and the public health of 
the country. [As amended, No- 
vember 12, 1908.] 

Art. 12. No titles of nobil- 
ity, or prerogatives, or heredi- 
tary honors'exist in the Republic 
nor shall they be recognized 
therein. Only the people, legally 
represented, may decree' recom- 
penses in honor of those who have 
rendered or may render eminent 
services to the country or to 
humanity. 



1917 
the said authority to render a 
favorable decision. 

Art. 10. The inhabitants of 
the United States of Mexico are 
entitled to have arms of any 
kind in their possession for their 
protection and legitimate de- 
fense, excepting such as are 
expressly prohibited by law and 
such as the nation may reserve 
for the exclusive use of the army, 
navy and national guard; but 
they shall not bear such arms 
within inhabited places, except 
subject to the police regulations 
thereof. 

Art. 11. Every one has the 
right to enter and leave the 
Republic, to travel through its 
territory and change his resi- 
dence without necessity of a letter 
of security, passport, safe con- 
duct or any other similar re- 
quirement. The exercise of this 
right shall be subordinated to 
the powers of the judiciary, in 
the event of civil or criminal 
responsibility, and to those of 
the executive, in so far as relates 
to the limitations imposed by law 
in regard to emigration, immi- 
gration, and the public health 
of the country, or in regard to 
undesirable foreigners resident in 
the country. 

Art. 12. No titles of nobil- 
ity, prerogatives or hereditary 
honors shall be granted in the 
United States of Mexico, nor 
shall any effect be given to those 
granted by other countries. 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
Art. 13. In the Mexican Re- 
public no one shall be tried 
according to private laws or by 
special tribunals. No person or 
corporation shall have privileges 
nor enjoy emoluments which are 
not in compensation for a public 
service and established by law. 
Military jurisdiction shall be 
recognized only for the trial of 
criminal cases having direct con- 
nection with military discipline. 
The law shall clearly define the 
cases included in this exception. 



Art. 14. No retroactive law 
shall be enacted. No person 
shall be tried or sentenced except 
under laws previously enacted, 
exactly applicable to the case, 
and by a tribunal previously 
established by law. 



Art. 15. No treaty shall ever 
be made for the extradition of 



1917 
Art. 13. No one shall be tried 
according to private laws, or by 
special tribunals. No person or 
corporation shall have privileges 
nor enjoy emoluments which are 
not in compensation for public 
services and established by law. 
Military jurisdiction shall be 
recognized for the trial of crim- 
inal cases having direct con- 
nection with military discipline, 
but the military tribunals shall in 
no case and for no reason extend 
their jurisdiction over persons 
not belonging to the army. When- 
ever a civilian shall be implicated 
in any military crime or offense, 
the cause shall be heard by the 
corresponding civil authorities. 

Art. 14. No law shall be given 
retroactive effect to the prejudice 
of any person whatsoever. 

No person shall be deprived 
of life, liberty, property, posses- 
sions or rights without due 
process of law instituted before 
a duly created court, in which 
the essential elements of proce- 
dure are observed and in accord- 
ance with previously existing 
laws. 

In criminal cases no penalty 
shall be imposed by mere analogy 
or even by a priori evidence, but 
the penalty shall be decreed by a 
law in every respect applicable to 
the crime in question. 

In civil suits the final judgment 
shall be according to the letter or 
the juridical interpretation of the 
law; in the absence of the latter, 
the general legal principles shall 
govern. 

Art. 15. No treaty shall be 
authorized for the extradition 



8 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
political offenders, or of offend- 
ers of the common class, who 
have been slaves in the country 
where the offense was com- 
mitted; nor shall any agreement 
or treaty be entered into which 
abridges or modifies the guaran- 
tees and rights which this con- 
stitution grants to the individ- 
ual and to the citizen. 

Art. 16. No one shall be mo- 
lested in his person, family, 
domicile, papers or possessions, 
except by virtue of an order in 
writing of the competent au- 
thority, setting forth the legal 
grounds upon which the measure 
is taken. In cases in flagrante 
delicto any person may apprehend 
the offender and his accomplices, 
placing them without delay at 
the disposal of the nearest au- 
thorities. 



1917 
of political offenders, or of of- 
fenders of the common class, 
who have been slaves in the 
country where the offense was 
committed. Nor shall any agree- 
ment or treaty be entered into 
which abridges or modifies the 
guarantees and rights which this 
constitution grants to the indi- 
vidual and to the citizen. 

Art. 16. No one shall be 
molested in his person, family, 
domicile, papers or possessions, 
except by virtue of an order in 
writing of the competent au- 
thority setting forth the legal 
ground and justification for the 
action taken. No order of arrest 
or detention shall be issued against 
any person other than by com- 
petent judicial authority, nor un- 
less preceded by a charge, accusa- 
tion or complaint for a specific 
offense punishable by imprison- 
ment, supported by an affidavit 
of a credible party or by such other 
evidence as shall make the guilt of 
the accused probable; in cases in 
flagrante delicto any person may 
arrest the offender and his ac- 
complices, placing them without 
delay at the disposition of the 
nearest authorities. Only in ur- 
gent cases instituted by the public 
attorney without previous com- 
plaint or indictment 3 and when 
there is no judicial authority 
available may the administrative 
authorities, on their strictest ac- 
countability, order the detention 
of the accused, placing him at the 
disposition of the judicial authori- 
ties. Every search warrant, which 
may only be issued by the ju- 

£ee note to Art. 21, p. 114. 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



Art. 17. No one shall be 
imprisoned for debts of a purely 
civil character. No one shall 
resort to violence in the enforce- 
ment of his rights. The tribu- 
nals shall always be open for the 
administration of justice, which 
shall be gratuitous, judicial costs 
being consequently abolished. 



Art. 18. Imprisonment shall 
take place only for crimes de- 
serving corporal punishment. In 
any stage of the case in which 
it shall appear that such a pun- 
ishment can not be imposed upon 
the accused, he shall be set at 



1917 
dicial authority and which must 
be in writing, shall specify the 
place to be searched, the person or 
persons to be arrested and the 
objects sought, to which the pro- 
ceeding shall be strictly limited; at 
the conclusion of which, a detailed 
written statement shall be drawn 
up in the presence of two wit- 
nesses proposed by the occupant 
of the place to be searched, or, in 
his absence or refusal, by the 
official making the search. 

Administrative officials may en- 
ter private houses solely for the 
purpose of determining that the 
sanitary and police regulations 
have been complied with; they may 
likewise demand the exhibition of 
books and documents necessary 
to prove that the fiscal regulations 
have been obeyed, subject to the 
respective laws and to the formali- 
ties prescribed for cases of search. 

Art. 17. No one shall be im- 
prisoned for debts of a purely 
civil character. No one shall 
take the law into his own hands, 
nor resort to violence in the 
enforcement of his rights. The 
courts shall be open for the admin- 
istration of justice at such times 
and under such conditions asthelaw 
may establish; their services shall 
be gratuitous and all judicial 
costs are accordingly prohibited. 

Art. 18. Detention shall be ex- 
ercised only for offenses meriting 
corporal punishment. The place 
of detention shall be different and 
completely separated from that set 
apart for the serving of sentences. 

The Federal and State Govern- 



10 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
liberty on bail. 4 In no case shall 
the imprisonment or detention 
be prolonged for failure to pay 
fees, or any other pecuniary 
charge. 5 

Art. 19. No detention shall 
exceed three days, unless justi- 
fied by a warrant, issued in 
accordance with law, and giving 
the grounds for the imprison- 
ment. The mere lapse of this 
time shall render the authority 
that orders or consents to it and 
the agents, ministers, wardens, 
or jailers who execute it, respon- 
sible therefor. Any maltreat- 
ment during apprehension or 
confinement; any molestation 
inflicted without legal justifica- 
tion; or any exaction or con- 
tribution levied in prison, is an 
abuse which the laws must cor- 
rect and the authorities severely 
punish. 



* Compare Sec. I, Art. 20, of 1917. 
6 Substantially identical with Sec. X, 
Art. 20, of 1917. 



1917 
ments shall organize in their 
respective territories the penal 
system — penal colonies or prisons 
— on the basis of labor as a means 
of regeneration. 6 

Art. 19. No detention shall 
exceed three days except for 
reasons specified in the formal 
order of commitment, which 
shall set forth the offense charged, 
the substance thereof, the time, 
place and circumstances of its 
commission, and the facts dis- 
closed in the preliminary exami- 
nation; these facts must always be 
sufficient to establish the corpus 
delicti and the probable guilt of 
the accused. All authorities or- 
dering any detention or consent- 
ing thereto, as well as all agents, 
subordinates, wardens or jailers 
executing the same, shall be 
liable for any breach of this 
provision. 

The trial shall take place only 
for the offense or offenses set forth 
in the formal order of commit- 
ment. If it shall develop in the 
course of trial that another offense 
different from that charged has 
been committed, a separate accu- 
sation must be brought. This, 
however, shall not prevent the 
joinder of both causes of action, 
if deemed advisable. 

Any maltreatment during ap- 
prehension or confinement; any 
molestation inflicted without legal 
justification; any exaction or con- 
tribution levied in prison are 
abuses which the law shall cor- 
rect and the authorities repress. 

6 See Art. 5 and Clauses I and II of 
Art. 123 of 1917. 



Constitution of Mexico 



11 



1857 
Art. 20. In every criminal 
trial the accused shall enjoy the 
following guarantees: 

I. The grounds of the pro- 
ceedings and the name of the 
accuser, if there be such, shall 
be made known to him. 

II. His preliminary examina- 
tion shall be made within forty- 
eight hours, to be counted from 
the time he is placed at the 
disposition of the judge. 

III. He shall be confronted 
with the witnesses who testify 
against him. 

IV. He shall be furnished with 
all information of record, which 
he may need for his defense. 

V. He shall be heard in his 
defense, either personally or by 
counsel, or by both, as he may 
desire. In case he shall have 
no one to defend him, a list of 
public counsel shall be shown 
to him, in order that he may 
choose one or more to act as his 
counsel. 



1917 
Art. 20. In every criminal 
trial the accused shall enjoy the 
following guarantees: 

I. He shall be set at liberty on 
demand and upon giving a bond 
up to ten thousand pesos, accord- 
ing to his status and the gravity 
of the offense charged, provided, 
however, that the said offense shall 
not be punishable with more than 
five years' imprisonment; he shall 
be set at liberty without any 
further requisite than the placing 
of the stipulated sum at the dis- 
posal of the proper authorities or 
the giving of an adequate mort- 
gage bond or personal security. 1 

II. He may not be forced to be 
a witness against himself; where- 
fore denial of access or other means 
looking towards this end is hereby 
strictly prohibited. 

III. He shall be publicly noti- 
fied within forty-eight hours 
after being turned over to the 
judicial authorities of the name 
of his accuser and of the nature 
of and cause for the accusation, 
so that he may be familiar with 
the offense with which he is 
charged, may reply thereto and 
make his preliminary statement. 

IV. He shall be confronted 
with the witnesses against him, 
who shall testify in his presence 
if they are to be found in the place 
where the trial is being held, so 
that he may cross-examine them 
in his defense. 

V. All witnesses which he shall 
offer shall be heard in his defense, 
as well as all evidence received, 
for which he shall be given such 
time as the law may prescribe; 

7 See note to Art. 18 of 1857. 



12 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

he shall furthermore be assisted 
in securing the presence of any 
person or persons whose testimony 
he may request, provided they are 
to be found at the place of trial. 

VI. He shall be entitled to a 
public trial by a judge or jury of 
citizens who can read and write 
and are also citizens of the place 
and district where the offense shall 
have been committed, provided the 
penalty for such offense be greater 
than one year's imprisonment. 
The accused shall always be en- 
titled to trial by jury for all 
offenses committed by means of 
the press against the public peace 
or against the safety, domestic 
or foreign, of the Republic. 

VII. He shall be furnished 
with all information of record 
needed for his defense. 

VIII. He shall be tried within 
four months, if charged with an 
offense the maximum penalty for 
which does not exceed two years' 
imprisonment, and within .one 
year, if the maximum penalty be 
greater. 

IX. He shall be heard in his 
own defense, either personally 
or by counsel, or by both, as he 
may desire. In case he shall 
have no one to defend him, a 
list of official counsel shall be 
submitted to him in order that 
he may choose one or more to 
act in his defense. // the accused 
shall not desire to name any 
counsel for his defense, after 
having been called upon to do so 
at the time of his preliminary 
examination, the court shall ap- 
point counsel to defend him. The 
accused may name his counsel 
immediately on arrest and shall 



Constitution of Mexico 



13 



1857 



Art. 21. The imposition of 
penalties properly so called per- 
tains exclusively to the judiciary. 
The political or executive au- 
thorities shall only have power 
to impose fines and imprison- 
ment, as disciplinary measures, 
the former of no more than five 
hundred dollars, and the latter 
for no more than one month, in 
the cases and in the manner 
which the law shall expressly 
determine. 



Art. 22. Punishments by mu- 
tilation and infamy, by brand- 
ing, flogging, beating with sticks, 



1917 
be entitled to have him present at 
every stage of the trial; but he shall 
be bound to make him appear as 
often as required by the court. 

X. In no event may imprison- 
ment or detention be extended 
through failure to pay counsel 
fees or through any other pecu- 
niary charge, by virtue of any 
civil liability or other similar 
cause. 8 Nor shall detention be 
extended beyond the time set by 
law as the maximum for the 
offense charged. 

The period of detention shall 
be reckoned as a part of the final 
sentence. 

Art. 21. The imposition of 
all penalties is an exclusive attri- 
bute of the judiciary. The pros- 
ecution of offenses belongs to the 
public prosecutor and to the 
judicial police, who shall be under 
the immediate command and au- 
thority of the public prosecutor. 
The punishment of violations of 
municipal and police regulations 
belongs to the administrative au- 
thorities, and shall consist only 
of a fine or of imprisonment 
not exceeding thirty-six hours. 
Should the offender fail to pay 
the fine this shall be substituted by 
the corresponding period of arrest, 
which shall in no case exceed, 
fifteen days. 

Should the offender be a work- 
man or unskilled laborer, he shall 
not be punished with a fine greater 
than the amount of his weekly 
wage or salary. 

Art. 22. Punishments by mu- 
tilation and infamy, by branding, 
8 See note to Art. 18 of 1857. 



14 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
torture of whatever kind, exces- 
sive fines, confiscation of prop- 
erty, or any other penalties, 
unusual or working corruption 
of the blood, shall be forever pro- 
hibited. 



Art. 23. Capital punishment 
is abolished for political offenses; 
in the case of offenses other than 
political it shall only be imposed 
for high treason committed dur- 
ing a foreign war, parricide, mur- 
der with malice aforethought, 
arson, highway robbery, piracy, 
and grave military offenses. [As 
amended, May 14, 1901.] 

Art. 24. No criminal case 
shall have more than three 
instances. No person, whether 
acquitted or convicted, shall be 



1917 
flogging, beating with sticks, 
torture of any kind, excessive 
fines, confiscation of property 
and any other penalties, unusual 
or working corruption of the 
blood, are prohibited. 

Attachment proceedings of the 
whole or part of the property of 
any person made under judicial 
authority to cover any civil liability 
arising out of the commission of 
any offense, or by reason of the 
imposition of any tax or fine, 
shall not be deemed, a confiscation 
of property. 

Capital punishment is likewise 
forbidden for all political of- 
fenses; in the case of offenses 
other than political it shall only 
be imposed for high treason com- 
mitted during a foreign war, 
parricide, murder with malice 
aforethought, arson, abduction, 
highway robbery, piracy, and 
grave military offenses. 

Art. 23. [Identical] 



Constitution of Mexico 



15 



1857 
tried again for the same offense. 
The practice of discharging in 
one instance is abolished. 



Art. 25. Sealed correspon- 
dence sent through the mails 
shall be free from search. The 
violation of this guarantee is an 
offense which the law will punish 
severely. 

Art. 26. In time of peace no 
soldier may demand quarters, 
supplies, or other real or per- 
sonal service, without the con- 
sent of the owner. In time of 
war he may do so, but only in 
the manner prescribed by law. 



Art. 27. Private property shall 
not be taken without the con- 
sent of the owner, except for 
reasons of public utility, indem- 
nification having been made. 
The law shall determine the 
authority to make the expro- 
priation and the conditions on 
which it shall be carried out. 

No religious corporations and 
institutions of whatever char- 



1917 



Art. 24. Every one is free to 
embrace the religion of his choice 
and to practice all ceremonies, 
devotions or observances of his 
respective creed, either in places of 
public worship or at home, pro- 
vided they do not constitute an 
offense punishable by law. 

Every religious act of public 
worship shall be performed strictly 
within the places of public wor- 
ship, which shall be at all times 
under governmental supervision. 9 

Art. 25. Sealed correspon- 
dence sent through the mails shall 
be free from search, and its viola- 
tion shall be punishable by law. 



Art. 26. No member of the 
army shall in time of peace be 
quartered in private dwellings, 
without the consent of the own- 
er; nor shall he demand any 
other exaction. In time of war 
the military may demand lodg- 
ing, equipment, provisions and 
other assistance, in the manner 
provided by the corresponding 
martial law. 

Art. 27.. The ownership of 
lands and waters comprised within 
the limits of the national territory is 
vested originally in the Nation, 
which has had, and has, the right to 
transmit title thereof to private 
persons, thereby constituting pri- 
vate property. 

9 Drawn largely from "Leyes de 
Reforma" of December 14, 1874. See 
note to Art. 130, p. 116. 



16 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
acter, denomination, duration 
or object, nor civil corporations, 
when under the patronage, di- 
rection or administration of the 
former, or of ministers of any 
creed shall have legal capacity 
to acquire title to, or administer, 
real property, other than the 
buildings immediately and di- 
rectly destined to the services 
or purposes of the said corpora- 
tions and institutions. Nor 
shall they have legal capacity 
to acquire or administer loans 
made on such real property. 

Civil corporations and insti- 
tutions not comprised within 
the above provision, may ac- 
quire and administer, in addition 
to the buildings mentioned, real 
property and loans made on such 
real property required for their 
maintenance and purposes, sub- 
ject to the requisites and limi- 
tations to be established by the 
Federal law to be enacted by the 
Congress on the subject. [As 
amended, May 14, 1901.] 



1917 

Private property shall not be 
expropriated except for reasons of 
public utility and by means of 
indemnification. 

The Nation shall have at all 
times the right to impose on pri- 
vate property such limitations as 
the public interest may demand as 
well as the right to regulate the 
development of natural resources, 
which are susceptible of appro- 
priation, in order to conserve 
them and equitably to distribute 
the public wealth. For this pur- 
pose necessary measures shall 
be taken to divide large landed 
estates; to develop small landed 
holdings; to establish new centers 
of rural population with such 
lands and waters as may be indis- 
pensable to them; to encourage 
agriculture and to prevent the 
destruction of natural resources, 
and to protect property from 
damage detrimental to society. 
Settlements, hamlets situated on 
private property and communes 
which lack lands or water or do 
not possess them in sufficient 
quantities for their needs shall 
have the right to be provided with 
them from the adjoining prop- 
erties, always having due regard 
for small landed holdings. Where- 
fore, all grants of lands made up 
to the present time under the decree 
of January 6, 1915, are confirmed. 



Constitution of Mexico 17 

1857 1917 

Private property acquired for the 
said purposes shall be considered 
as taken for public utility. 

In the Nation is vested direct 
ownership of all minerals or sub- 
stances which in veins, layers, 
masses, or beds constitute deposits 
whose nature is different from the 
components of the land, such as 
minerals from which metals and 
metaloids used for industrial pur- 
poses are extracted; beds of pre- 
cious stones, rock salt and salt lakes 
formed directly by marine waters, 
products derived from the decom- 
position of rocks, when their ex- 
ploitation requires underground 
work; phosphates which may be 
used for fertilizers; solid mineral 
fuels; petroleum and all hydro- 
carbons — solid, liquid or gaseous. 

In the Nation is ' likewise 
vested the ownership of the waters 
of territorial seas to the extent and 
in the terms fixed by the law of 
nations; those of lakes and inlets 
of bays; those of interior lakes of 
natural formation which are di- 
rectly connected with flowing 
waters; those of principal rivers 
or tributaries from the points at 
which there is a permanent cur- 
rent of water in their beds to their 
mouths, whether they flow to the 
sea or cross two or more States; 
those of intermittent streams 
which traverse two or more States 
in their main body; the waters of 
rivers, streams, or ravines, when 
they bound the national territory 
or that of the States; waters ex- 
tracted from mines; and the beds 
and banks of the lakes and streams 
hereinbefore mentioned, to the 
extent fixed by law. Any other 
stream of water not comprised 



18 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

within the foregoing enumeration 
shall be considered as an integral 
part of the private property through 
which it flows; but the develop- 
ment of the waters when they pass 
from one landed property to 
another shall be considered of 
public utility and shall be subject 
to the provisions prescribed by the 
States. 

In the cases to which the two 
foregoing paragraphs refer, the 
ownership of the Nation is in- 
alienable and may not be lost by 
prescription; concessions shall be 
granted by the Federal Govern- 
ment to private parties or civil or 
commercial corporations organ- 
ized under the laws of Mexico, 
only on condition that said re- 
sources be regularly developed, 
and on the further condition that 
the legal provisions be observed. 

Legal capacity to acquire owner- 
ship of lands and waters of the 
nation shall be governed by the 
following provisions: 

1. Only Mexicans by birth or 
naturalization and Mexican com- 
panies have the right to acquire 
ownership in lands, waters and 
their appurtenances, or to ob- 
tain concessions to develop mines, 
waters or mineral fuels in the 
Republic of Mexico. The Nation 
may grant the same right to for- 
eigners, provided they agree before 
the Department of Foreign Af- 
fairs to be considered Mexicans 
in respect to such property, and 
accordingly not to invoke the 
protection of their Governments in 
respect to the same, under pen- 
alty, in case of breach, of for- 
feiture to the Nation of property 
so acquired. Within a zone of 



Constitution of Mexico 19 

1857 1917 

100 kilometers from the frontiers, 
and of 50 kilometers from the sea 
coast, no foreigner shall under any 
conditions acquire direct owner- 
ship of lands and waters. 

II. The religious institutions 
known as churches, irrespective 
of creed, shall in no case have 
legal capacity to acquire, hold or 
administer real property or loans 
made on such real property 10 ; all 
such real property or loans as 
may be at present held by the said 
religious institutions, either on 
their own behalf or through third 
parties, shall vest in the Nation, 
and any one shall have the right to 
denounce property so held. Pre- 
sumptive proof shall be sufficient 
to declare the denunciation well- 
founded. Places of public wor- 
ship are the property of the Nation, 
as represented by the Federal Gov- 
ernment, which shall determine 
which of them may continue to be 
devoted to their present purposes. 
Episcopal residences, rectories, 
seminaries, orphan asylums or 
collegiate establishments of relig- 
ious institutions, convents or 
any other buildings built or de- 
signed for the administration, prop- 
aganda, or teaching of the tenets 
of any religious creed shall forth- 
with vest, as of full right, directly 
in the Nation, to be used exclu- 
sively for the public services of the 
Federation or of the States, within 
their respective jurisdictions. All 
places of public worship which 
shall later be erected shall be the 
property of the Nation. 

III. Public and private char- 
itable institutions for the sick and 
needy, for scientific research, or for 
the diffusion of knowledge, mutual 

10 Compare second paragraph of Art. 
27 of 1857. 



20 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

aid societies or organizations 
formed for any other lawful pur- 
pose shall in no case acquire, hold 
or administer loans made on real 
property, unless the mortgage terms 
do not exceed ten years. In no 
case shall institutions of this 
character be under the patronage, 
direction, administration, charge 
or supervision of religious cor- 
porations or institutions, nor of 
ministers of any religious creed or 
of their dependents, even though 
either the former or the latter shall 
not be in active service. 11 

IV. Commercial stock com- 
panies shall not acquire, hold, 
or administer rural properties. 
Companies of this nature which 
may be organized to develop any 
manufacturing, mining, petroleum 
or other industry, excepting only 
agricultural industries, may ac- 
quire, hold or administer lands 
only in an area absolutely neces- 
sary for their establishments or 
adequate to serve the purposes 
indicated, which the Executive of 
the Union or of the respective State 
in each case shall determine. 

V. Banks duly organized 
under the laws governing institu- 
tions of credit may make mortgage 
loans on rural and urban property 
in accordance with the provisions 
of the said laws, but they may 
not own nor administer more real 
property than that absolutely nec- 
essary for their direct purposes; 
and they may furthermore hold, 
temporarily for the brief term 
fixed by law such real property 

11 The second paragraph of the 1857 
Constitution and Clauses II and III 
of the 1917 text are largely drawn 
from the "Leyes de Reforma." See 
note to Art. 130, p. 116. 



Constitution of Mexico 21 

1857 1917 

as may be judicially adjudicated 
to them in execution proceedings. 

VI. Properties held in common 
by co-owners, hamlets situated on 
private property, pueblos, tribal 
congregations and other settle- 
ments which, as a matter of fact 
or law, conserve their communal 
character, shall have legal capacity 
to enjoy in common the waters, 
woods and lands belonging to 
them, or which may have been or 
shall be restored to them according 
to the law of January 6, 1915, 
until such time as the manner of 
making the division of the lands 
shall be determined by law. 

VII. Excepting the corpora- 
tions to which Clauses HI, IV, V 
and VI hereof refer, no other civil 
corporation may hold or admin- 
ister on its own behalf real estate 
or mortgage loans derived there- 
from, with the single exception of 
buildings designed directly and 
immediately for the purposes of 
the institution. The States, the 
Federal District and the Terri- 
tories, as well as the municipali- 
ties throughout the Republic, shall 
enjoy full legal capacity to acquire 
and hold all real estate necessary 
for public services. 

The Federal and State laws 
shall determine within their re- 
spective jurisdictions those cases 
in which the occupation of private 
property shall be considered of 
public utility; and in accordance 
with the said laws the administra- 
tive authorities shall make the 
corresponding declaration. The 
amount fixed as compensation for 
the expropriated property shall be 
based on the sum at which the said 



22 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

■property shall be valued for fiscal 
purposes in the catastral or rev- 
enue offices, whether this value be 
that manifested by the owner or 
merely impliedly accepted by rea- 
son of the payment of his taxes on 
such a basis, to which there shall 
be added ten per cent. The 
increased value which the prop- 
erty in question may have ac- 
quired through improvements made 
subsequent to the date of the fixing 
of the fiscal value shall be the only 
matter subject to expert opinion 
and to judicial determination. 
The same procedure shall be 
observed in respect to objects whose 
value is not recorded in the revenue 
offices. 

All proceedings, findings, deci- 
sions and all operations of de- 
marcation, concession, compo- 
sition, judgment, compromise, 
alienation, or auction which may 
have deprived properties held in 
common by co-owners, hamlets 
situated on private property, set- 
tlements, congregations, tribes and 
other settlement organizations still 
existing since the law of June 25, 
1856, of the whole or a part of 
their lands, woods and waters, are 
declared null and void; all find- 
ings, resolutions and operations 
which may subsequently take place 
and produce the same effects 
shall likewise be null and void. 
Consequently all lands, forests 
and waters of which the above- 
mentioned settlements may have 
been deprived shall be restored to 
them according to the decree of 
January 6, 1915, which shall 
remain in force as a constitu- 
tional law. In case the adjudica- 
tion of lands, by way of restitution, 



Constitution of Mexico 23 

1857 1917 

be not legal in the terms of the said 
decree, which adjudication have 
been requested by any of the 
above entities, those lands shall 
nevertheless be given to them by 
way of grant, and they shall in no 
event fail to receive such as they 
may need. Only such lands, title 
to which may have been acquired 
in the divisions made by virtue of 
the said law of June 25, 1856, 
or such as may be held in undis- 
puted ownership for more than ten 
years are excepted from the pro- 
vision of nullity, provided their 
area does not exceed fifty hectares.} 1 
Any excess over this area shall be 
returned to the commune and the 
owner shall be indemnified. All 
laws of restitution enacted by 
virtue of this provision shall be 
immediately carried into effect 
by the administrative authorities. 
Only members of the commune 
shall have the right to the lands 
destined to be divided, and the 
rights to these lands shall be in- 
alienable so long as they remain 
undivided; the same provision 
shall govern the right of ownership 
after the division has been made. 
The exercise of the rights pertain- 
ing to the Nation by virtue of this 
article shall follow judicial proc- 
ess; but as a part of this pro- 
cess and by order of the proper 
tribunals, which order shall be 
issued within the maximum period 
of one month, the administrative 
authorities shall proceed without 
delay to the occupation, adminis- 
tration, auction, or sale of the 
lands and waters in question, 
together with all their appurte- 
nances, and in no case may the 
acts of the said authorities be set 
11 1 hectare=2.47 acres. 



24 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

aside until final sentence is handed 
down. 

During the next constitutional 
term, the Congress and the State 
Legislatures shall enact laws, within 
their respective jurisdictions, for 
the purpose of carrying out the 
division of large landed estates, 
subject to the following conditions: 

(a) In each State and Terri- 
tory there shall be fixed the maxi- 
mum area of land which any one 
individual or legally organized 
corporation may own. 

(6) The excess of the area thus 
fixed shall be subdivided by the 
ownef within the period set by the 
laws of the respective locality; and 
these subdivisions shall be offered 
for sale on such conditions as the 
respective governments shall ap- 
prove, in accordance with the said 
laws. 

(c) 7/ the owner shall refuse to 
make the subdivision, this shall be 
carried out by the local govern- 
ment, by means of expropriation 
proceedings. 

(d) The value of the subdivi- 
sions shall be paid in annual 
amounts sufficient to amortize the 
principal and interest within a 
period of not less than twenty 
years, during which the person 
acquiring them may not alienate 
them. The rate of interest shall 
not exceed five per cent per annum. 

(e) The owner shall be bound 
to receive bonds of a special issue 
to guarantee the payment of the 
property expropriated. With this 
end in view, the Congress shall 
issue a law authorizing the States 
to issue bonds to meet their agra- 
rian obligations. 



Constitution of Mexico 



25 



1857 



Art. 28. There shall be no 
private nor governmental mo- 
nopolies of any kind whatsoever, 
nor any prohibitions even under 
cover of protection to industry, 
excepting only those relating to 
the coinage of money, the postal 
service, and the privileges which, 
for a limited time, the law may 
concede to inventors or improv- 
ers of inventions. 



1917 

(/) The local laws shall govern 
the extent of the family patrimony, 
and determine what property 
shall constitute the same on the 
basis of its inalienability; it shall 
not be subject to attachment nor to 
any charge whatever. 

All contracts and concessions 
made by former governments from 
and after the year 1876 which 
shall have resulted in the monop- 
oly of lands, waters and natural 
resources of the Nation by a single 
individual or corporation, are 
declared subject to revision, and the 
Executive is authorized to declare 
those null and void which seriously 
prejudice the public interest. 

Art. 28. There shall be no 
private nor governmental mo- 
nopolies of any kind whatsoever 
in the United States of Mexico; 
nor exemption from taxation; 
nor any prohibition even under 
cover of protection to industry, 
excepting only those relating to 
the coinage of money, to the 
postal, telegraphic, and radio- 
telegraphic services, to the issu- 
ance of bills by a single banking 
institution to be controlled by the 
Federal Government, and to the 
privileges which for a limited 
period the law may concede to 
authors and artists for the repro- 
duction of their work; and lastly, 
to those granted inventors or 
improvers of inventions for the 
exclusive use of their inventions. 

The law will accordingly se- 
verely punish and the authorities 
diligently prosecute any accumu- 
lating or cornering by one or more 
persons of necessaries for the pur- 
pose of bringing about a rise in 



26 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

price; any act or measure which 
shall stifle or endeavor to stifle 
free competition in any produc- 
tion, industry, trade or public 
service; any agreement or com- 
bination of any kind entered into 
by producers, manufacturers, mer- 
chants, common carriers or other 
public or quasi-public service, to 
stifle competition and to compel 
the consumer to pay exorbitant 
prices; and in general whatever 
constitutes an unfair and exclu- 
sive advantage in favor of one or 
more specified person or persons 
to the detriment of the public in 
general or of any special class of 
society. 

Associations of labor organized 
to protect their own interests shall 
not be deemed a monopoly. Nor 
shall cooperative associations or 
unions of producers be deemed 
monopolies when, in defense of 
their own interests or of the gen- 
eral public, they sell difectly in 
foreign markets national or in- 
dustrial products which are the 
principal source of wealth of the 
region in which they are pro- 
duced, provided they be not neces- 
saries, and provided further that 
such associations be under the 
supervision or protection of the 
Federal Government or of that of 
the States, and provided further 
that authorization be in each case 
obtained from the respective legis- 
lative bodies. These legislative 
bodies may, either on their own 
initiative or on the recommenda- 
tion of the executive, revoke, when- 
ever the public interest shall so 
demand, the authorization granted 
for the establishment of the asso- 
ciations in question. 



Constitution of Mexico 



27 



1857 

Art. 29. In cases of invasion, 
grave disturbance of the public 
peace, or any other emergency 
which may place society in grave 
danger, the President of the Re- 
public, and no one else, shall 
have the power to suspend, with 
the advice of the council of 
ministers and with the approval 
of the Congress, and, in the 
recess thereof, of the Perma- 
nent Committee, the guarantees 
granted by this Constitution 
excepting those ensuring the 
life of man ; but such suspen- 
sion shall in no case be con- 
fined in its effects to a par- 
ticular individual, but shall be 
made by means of a general 
decree, and only for a limited 
time. 

If the suspension occur while 
the Congress is in session, this 
body shall grant such powers as 
in its judgment the executive 
may need to meet the situation; 
if the suspension occur while the 
Congress is in recess, the Per- 
manent Committee shall forth- 
with convoke the Congress for 
the granting of such powers. 



1917 
Art. 29. In cases of invasion, 
grave disturbance of the public 
peace, or any other emergency 
which may place society in grave 
danger or conflict, the President 
of the Republic of Mexico, and 
no one else, with the concur- 
rence of the council of minis- 
ters, and with the approval of 
the Congress, or if the latter 
shall be in recess, of the Per- 
manent Committee, shall have 
power to suspend throughout the 
whole Republic or in any portion 
thereof, such guarantees as shall 
be a hindrance in meeting the 
situation promptly and readily; 
but such suspension shall in no 
case be confined to a particular 
individual, but shall be made by 
means of a general decree and 
only for a limited period. If 
the suspension occur while the 
Congress is in session, this body 
shall grant such powers as in its 
judgment the executive may 
need to meet the situation; if 
the suspension occur while the 
Congress is in recess, the Con- 
gress shall be convoked forth- 
with for the granting of such 
powers. 



SECTION II 

Of Mexicans 

Art. 30. Mexicans are: 

I. All persons born, within or 
without the Republic, of Mexi- 
can parents. 

II. Aliens naturalized in con- 
formity with the laws of the 
Federation. 

III. Aliens who acquire real 
estate in the Republic, or have 
Mexican children, if they do not 



CHAPTER II 

Of Mexicans 

Art. 30. 12 A Mexican shall be 
such either by birth or by naturali- 
zation. 

I. Mexicans by birth are those 

born of Mexican parents, within 

or without the Republic, provided 

'* Several of the provisions of this 
article follow the Naturalization Law 
of May 28, 1886, while others are a 
radical departure in the juridical the- 
ories hitherto accepted in Mexico. 



28 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
declare their intention to retain 
their nationality. 



Art. 31. It shall be the duty 
of every Mexican: 

I. To defend the independ- 
ence, the territory, the honor, the 
rights and interests of his country. 



1917 
in the latter case the parents be 
also Mexicans by birth. Persons 
born within the Republic of foreign 
parentage shall likewise be con- 
sidered Mexicans by birth, who 
within one year after they come 
of age shall declare to the Depart- 
ment of Foreign Affairs that they 
elect Mexican citizenship, and 
who shall furthermore prove to the 
said Department that they have 
resided within the country during 
the six years immediately prior to 
the said declaration. 

II. Mexicans by naturaliza- 
tion are: 

(a) The children of foreign 
parentage born in the country, 
who shall elect Mexican citizen- 
ship in the manner prescribed in 
the foregoing clause, and in whom 
the residence qualification required 
in the said section does not concur. 

(b) Those persons who shall 
have resided in the country for 
five consecutive years, have an 
honest means of livelihood and 
shall have obtained naturalization 
from the said Department of 
Foreign Affairs. 

(c) Those of mixed Indian and 
Latin descent who may have estab- 
lished residence in the Republic, 
and shall have manifested their 
intention to acquire Mexican citi- 
zenship. 

In the cases stipulated in these 
sections, the law shall determine 
the manner of proving the req- 
uisites therein demanded. 

Art. 31. It shall be the duty 
of every Mexican: 

I. To compel the attendance at 
either private or public schools of 
their children or wards, when 



Constitution of Mexico 



29 



1857 

II. To serve in the army or 
the national guard pursuant to 
the respective organic laws. [As 
amended, June 10, 1898.] 

III. To contribute in the pro- 
portional and equitable manner 
provided by law, toward the 
public expenses of the Federa- 
tion, the State and the munici- 
pality in which he resides. 



Art. 32. Mexicans shall be 
preferred under equal circum- 
stances to foreigners for all 
public employments, offices, or 
commissions, when citizenship is 
not indispensable. Laws shall 
be enacted to improve the con- 
dition of industrious Mexicans, 
by rewarding those who distin- 
guish themselves in any science 
or art, to foster labor, and to 
found colleges and manual train- 
ing schools. 



1917 
under fifteen years of age, in order 
that they may receive primary 
instruction and military training 
for such -periods as the law of 
public instruction in each State 
shall determine. 

II. To attend on such days and 
at such hours as the town council 
shall in each case prescribe, to 
receive such civic instruction and 
military training as shall fit them 
to exercise their civic rights, shall 
make them skillful in the han- 
dling of arms and familiar with 
military discipline. 

III. To enlist and serve in the 
national guard, pursuant to the 
respective organic law for the 
purpose of preserving and de- 
fending the independence, terri- 
tory, honor, rights and interests 
of the country, as well as domes- 
tic peace and order. 

IV. To contribute in the pro- 
portional and equitable manner 
provided by law toward the 
public expenses of the Federa- 
tion, the State and the munici- 
pality in which he resides. 

Art. 32. Mexicans shall be 
preferred under equal circum- 
stances to foreigners for all kinds 
of concessions and for all public 
employments, offices or com- 
missions, when citizenship is not 
indispensable. No foreigner 
shall serve in the army nor in the 
police corps nor in any other 
department of public safety during 
times of peace. 

Only Mexicans by birth may 
belong to the national navy, or fill 
any office or commission therein. 
The same requisite shall be re- 
quired for captains, pilots, mas- 



30 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



1917 
ters and chief engineers of Mexi- 
can merchant ships, as well as 
for two-thirds of the members of 
the crew. 



SECTION III 

Of Aliens 

Art. 33. Aliens are those who 
do not possess the qualifications 
prescribed by Article 30. They 
shall be entitled to the guaran- 
tees granted by Section I, Title 
I, of the present Constitution, 
except that in all cases the 
Government has the right to 
expel undesirable foreigners. 
They are under obligation to 
contribute to the public ex- 
penses as the law may provide, 
and to obey and respect the 
institutions, laws, and authori- 
ties of the country, subjecting 
themselves to the decisions and 
sentences of the tribunals, and 
shall not be entitled to seek 
other redress than that which 
the laws concede to Mexicans. 



CHAPTER III 

Of Aliens 

Art. 33. Aliens are those who 
do not possess the qualifications 
prescribed by Article 30. They 
shall be entitled to the guaran- 
tees granted by Chapter I, 
Title I, of the present Constitu- 
tion; but the Executive shall have 
the exclusive right to expel from 
the Republicforth with, and with- 
out judicial process, any foreigner 
whose presence he may deem inex- 
pedient. 

No foreigner shall meddle in 
any way whatsoever in the political 
affairs of the country. 



SECTION IV 

Of Mexican Citizens 

Art. 34. Mexican citizenship 
shall be enjoyed only by those 
Mexicans who have the follow- 
ing qualifications: 

I. Are over 21 years of age, if 
unmarried, and over 18, if mar- 
ried. 

II. Have-an honest means of 
livelihood. 

Art. 35. The prerogatives of 
citizens are: 

I. To vote at popular elec- 
tions. 

II. To be eligible for any elec- 



CHAPTER IV 

Of Mexican Citizens 
Art. 34. [Identical] 



Art. 35. [Identical] 



Constitution of Mexico 



31 



1857 
tive office and be qualified for 
any other office or commission, 
provided they have the other 
qualifications required by law. 

III. To assemble for the pur- 
pose of discussing the political 
affairs of the country. 

IV. To serve in the army or 
national guard for the defense of 
the Republic and its institutions, 
as by law determined. [As 
amended June 10, 1898.] 

V. To exercise the right of pe- 
tition in any matter whatever. 

Art. 36. It shall be the duty 
of every Mexican citizen: 

I. To register in the polls of 
the municipality in which he 
lives, setting forth the property 
which he owns, if any, or the 
industry, profession, or labor by 
which he subsists. 

II. To enlist in the national 
guard. 

III. To vote at popular elec- 
tions in the district to which he 
belongs. 

IV. To fill the elective federal 
offices to which he maybe chosen, 
and which in no case shall be 
gratuitous. 



1917 



Art. 37. Citizenship shall be 
lost: 

I. By naturalization in a for- 
eign country. 

II. By officially serving the 
government of another country 
or accepting its decorations, 
titles, or employment without 



Art. 36. It shall be the duty 
of every Mexican citizen: 

I. To register in the polls of 
the municipality, setting forth 
any property he may own and 
his professional or industrial 
pursuit, or occupation; and also 
to register in the electoral regis- 
tration lists, as by law deter- 
mined. 

II. To enlist in the national 
guard. 

III. To vote at popular elec- 
tions in the electoral district to 
which he belongs. 

IV. To fill the elective Fed- 
eral or State offices to which he 
may be chosen, which service 
shall in no case be gratuitous. 

V. To serve on the town council 
of the municipality wherein he 
resides and to perform all elec- 
toral and jury service. 

Art. 37. Citizenship shall be 
lost: 

I. By naturalization in a for- 
eign country. 

II. By officially serving the 
government of another country, 
or accepting its decorations, 
titles or employment without 



32 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
previous permission of the Fed- 
eral Congress, excepting liter- 
ary, scientific, and humanitarian 
titles, which may be accepted 
freely. 



Art. 38. The law shall deter- 
mine the cases and the form in 
which the rights of citizenship 
may be lost or suspended, and 
the manner in which they may 
be regained. 



1917 
previous permission of the Fed- 
eral Congress, excepting literary, 
scientific and humanitarian titles 
which may be accepted freely. 
III. By compromising them- 
selves in any way before ministers 
of any religious creed or before 
any other person not to observe 
the present Constitution, or the 
laws arising thereunder. 

Art. 38. • The rights or pre- 
rogatives of citizenship shall be sus- 
pended for the following reasons: 

I. Through failure to comply, 
without sufficient cause, with any 
of the obligations imposed by 
Article 86. This suspension shall 
last for one year and shall be in 
addition to any other penalties 
prescribed by law for the same 
offense. 

II. Through being subjected to 
criminal prosecution for an offense 
punishable with imprisonment, 
such suspension to be reckoned 
from the date of the formal order 
of commitment. 

III. Throughout the term of 
imprisonment. 

IV. Through vagrancy or ha- 
bitual drunkenness, declared in 
the manner provided by law. 

V. Through being a fugitive 
from justice, the suspension to be 
reckoned from the date of the 
order of arrest until the prescrip- 
tion of the criminal action. 

VI. Through any final sen- 
tence which shall decree as a 
penalty such suspension. 

The law shall determine the 
cases in which civic rights may 
be lost or suspended and the 
manner in which they may be 
regained. 



Constitution of Mexico 



33 



1857 



1917 



Title II 



SECTION I 



Of the National Sovereignty and 
Form of Government 

Art. 39. The national sover- 
eignty is vested essentially and 
originally in the people. All 
public power emanates from the 
people, and is instituted for their 
benefit. The people have at all 
times the inalienable right to 
alter or modify the form of their 
government. 

Art. 40. It is the will of the 
Mexican people to constitute 
themselves into a democratic, 
federal, representative republic, 
consisting of States, free and 
sovereign in all that concerns 
their internal affairs, but united 
in a federation according to the 
principles of this fundamental 
law. 

Art. 41. The people exercise 
their sovereignty through the 
federal powers in the matters 
belonging to the Union, and 
through those of the States in 
the matters relating to the in- 
ternal administration of the lat- 
ter. This power shall be exer- 
cised in the manner respectively 
established by the Constitu- 
tions, both Federal and State. 
The constitutions of the States 
shall in no case contravene the 
stipulations of the Federal con- 
stitution. 



Title II 



CHAPTER I 



Of the National Sovereignty and 
Form of Government 

Art. 39. [Identical] 



Art. 40. [Identical] 



Art. 41. [Identical] 



34 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



1917 



SECTION II 

Of the Integral Parts of the 

Federation and the National 

Territory 

Art. 42. The national terri- 
tory comprises the integral parts 
of the Federation and the adja- 
cent islands in both oceans. 

Art. 43. The integral parts of the 
Federation are: the States of Aguas- 
calientes, Campeche, Coahuila, Colima, 
Chiapas, Chihuahua, Durango, Guan- 
ajuato, Guerrero, Hidalgo, Jalisco, 
Mexico, Michoacan, Morelos, Nuevo 
Le6n, Oaxaca, Puebla, Quer^taro, San 
Luis PotosS, Sinaloa, Sonora, Tabasco, 
Tamaulipas, Tlaxcala, Valle de Mexico, 
Vera Cruz, Yucatan, Zacatecas, the 
Territory of Lower California, the Ter- 
ritory of Tepic, formed from the seventh 
canton of Jalisco, and the Territory of 
Quintana Roo . The Territory of Quin- 
tana Roo shall be formed by the east- 
ern portion of the Peninsula of Yuca- 
tfln; it shall be bounded by a line which, 
drawn from the northern coast of the 
Gulf of Mexico, follows the arc of the 
meridian 87° 32' (Longitude West of 
Greenwich) to its intersection with 
parallel 21°, and thence till it meets the 
parallel passing through the Southern 
Tower of Chemax, twenty kilometers 
to the east of this town ; and reaching 
the vertex of the angle formed by the 
boundaries between the States of Yuca- 
tan and Campeche, near Put, goes 
southward to the parallel dividing the 
Republics of Mexico and Guatemala. 
[As amended November S4, 1902.] 

Art. 44. The States of Aguas- 
calientes, Chiapas, Chihuahua, 
Durango, Guerrero, Mexico, Pu- 
ebla, Quer£taro, Sinaloa, Son- 
ora, Tamaulipas, and the Terri- 
tory of Lower California shall 
preserve the limits which they 
now have. 



CHAPTER II 

Of the Integral Parts of the 

Federation and the National 

Territory 

Art. 42. The national terri- 
tory comprises the integral parts 
of the Federation and the ad- 
jacent islands in both oceans. 
It likewise comprises the Island of 
Guadalupe, those of Bevillagigedo, 
and that of "La Pasidn," situ- 
ated in the Pacific Ocean. 

Art. 43. The integral parts 
of the Federation are: The 
States of Aguascalientes, Cam- 
peche, Coahuila, Colima, Chia- 
pas, Chihuahua, Durango, Guan- 
ajuato, Guerrero, Hidalgo, Jal- 
isco, Mexico, Michoacan, More- 
los, Nayarit n , Nuevo Le6n, Oa- 
xaca, Puebla, Queretaro, San 
Luis Potosf, Sinaloa, Sonora, 
Tabasco, Tamaulipas, Tlaxcala, 
Vera Cruz, Yucatan, Zacatecas, 
the Federal District, the Terri- 
tory of Lower California, and 
the Territory of Quintana Roo. 



Art. 44. The Federal Dis- 
trict shall embrace its present 
territory; in the event of the 
removal of the Federal Powers 
to some other place it shall be 
created into the State of the 
Valley of Mexico, with such 
boundaries and area as the 
Federal Congress shall assign 
to it. 14 

"See Art. 47 of 1917. 
14 Substantially identical with Art. 
46 of 1857, 



Constitution of Mexico 



35 



1857 
Art. 45. The States of Col- 
ima and Tlaxcala shall preserve 
in their new character of States 
the limits which they had as 
Territories of the Federation. 

Art. 46. The State of the Val- 
ley of Mexico shall consist of 
the territory constituting at 
present the Federal District, but 
it shall not be a State until after 
the Supreme Federal Powers 
move to some other place. 

Art. 47. The State of Nuevo 
Le6n and Coahuila shall com- 
prise the territory formerly be- 
longing to the two separate 
States of which it now consists, 
except a part of the Bonanza 
Hacienda, which shall be added 
to Zacatecas, exactly as it was 
before its annexation to Coa- 
huila. 

Art. 48. The States of Guana- 
juato, Jalisco, Michoacan, Oa- 
xaca, San Luis Potosf, Tabasco, 
Vera Cruz, Yucatan, and Zaca- 
tecas shall recover the extent 
and limits which they had on 
the thirty-first of December, 
eighteen hundred and fifty-two, 
with the alterations established 
in the following article. 

Art. 49. The town of Conte- 
pec, now belonging to Guana- 
juato, shall be annexed to Mi- 
choacan. The municipality of 
Ahualulco, belonging to Zacate- 
cas, shall be annexed to San 
Luis Potosf. The municipali- 
ties of Ojo Caliente and San 
Francisco de los Adames, be- 
longing to San Luis, as well as 
the towns of Nueva Tlaxcala and 



1917 
Art. 45. The States and Ter- 
ritories of the Federation shall 
keep their present boundaries 
and areas, provided no boundary 
question shall exist between 
them. 

Art. 46. The States having 
pending boundary questions shall 
arrange or settle them as pro- 
vided by this Constitution. 



Art. 47. The State of Nayarit 
shall have the territorial area and 
boundaries at present comprising 
the Territory of Tepic. 



Art. 48. The islands in both 
oceans embraced within the na- 
tional territory shall depend di- 
rectly on the Federal Government, 
excepting those over which the 
States have up to the present time 
exercised jurisdiction. 



36 



Constitution of Mexico 



1867 
San Andres del Teul, belonging 
to Jalisco, shall be annexed to 
Zacatecas. The department of 
Tiixpam shall continue to form a 
part of Vera Cruz. The canton 
of Huimanguillo, belonging to 
Vera Cruz, shall be annexed to 
Tabasco. 



1917 



Title III 

Of the Division of Powers 

Art. 50. The supreme power 
of the Federation is divided for 
its exercise into legislative, ex- 
ecutive, and judicial. Two or 
more of these powers shall never 
be united in one person or cor- 
poration, nor shall the legisla- 
tive power be vested in one 
individual. 



Title III 



CHAPTER I 



Of the Division of Powers 

Art. 49. The supreme power 
of the Federation is divided for 
its exercise into legislative, ex- 
ecutive and judicial. 

Two or more of these powers 
shall never be united in one 
person or corporation, nor shall 
the legislative power be vested 
in one individual except in the 
case of extraordinary powers grant- 
ed to the executive, in accordance 
with the provisions of Article 29. 



SECTION I 

Of the Legislative Power 

Art. 5 1 . The legislative power 
of the United States of Mexico 
is vested in a general Congress 
which shall consist of a House of 
Representatives and a Senate. 
[As amended November 13, 1874-] 



CHAPTER II 

Of the Legislative Power 
Art. 50. [Identical] 



PARAGRAPH I 

Of the Election and Installation 
oj the Congress 

Art. 52. The House of Rep- 
resentatives shall consist of rep- 
resentatives of the Nation, all of 
whom shall be elected every two 
years by the citizens of Mexico. 
[As amended November 13,1874-] 



SECTION I 



Of the Election and Installation 
of the Congress 

Art. 51, [Identical] 



Constitution of Mexico 



37 



1857 
Art. 53. One representative 
shall be chosen for each 60,000 
inhabitants or for any fraction 
thereof exceeding 20,000, on the 
basis of the general census of 
the Federal District and of each 
State and Territory. Any State 
or Territory in which the popu- 
lation shall be less than that 
fixed by this article shall, never- 
theless, elect one representative. 
[As amended December 18, 1901. \ 

Art. 54. There shall be elected 
an alternate for each representa- 
tive. 

Art. 55. The election of rep- 
resentatives shall be direct, in 
accordance with the provisions 
of the electoral law. [As amend- 
ed April 26, 1912.] 

Art. 56. Representatives shall 
have the following qualifications: 
To be Mexican citizens in the 
enjoyment of their rights; to be 
twenty-five years of age on the 
day of the opening of the ses- 
sion; to be domiciled in the State 
or Territory in which the elec- 
tion is held, and not to belong 
to the ecclesiastical state. The 
domicile shall not be lost through 
absence in the discharge of any 
elective office. 



Art. 52. 



1917 
[Identical] 



Art. 53. [Identical] 



Art. 54. [Identical] 



Art. 55. Representatives shall 
have the following qualifications : 

I. They shall be Mexican citi- 
zens by birth 1 * and in the enjoy- 
ment of their rights. 

II. They shall be over twenty- 
five years of age on the day of 
election. 

III. They shall be natives of 
the States or Territories respec- 
tively electing them, or domi- 
ciled and actually resident therein 
for six months immediately prior to 
the election. The domicile shall 
not be lost through absence in the 
discharge of any elective office. 

IV. They shall not be in active 
service in the Federal army, not 
have any command in the police 
corps or rural constabulary in the 
districts where the elections re- 
spectively take place, for at least 
ninety days immediately prior to 
the election. 

"See Art. 30 of 1917. 



38 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



Art. 57. The offices of sena- 
tor and representative are incom- 
patible with any other office or 
commission of the Federal Gov- 
ernment for which any emolu- 
ment is received. [As amended 
November 13, 1874.] 

Art. 58. Representatives and 
senators are disqualified, from 
the day of their election until 
the day on which their term 
expires, from accepting from the 
Federal executive without pre- 
vious permission of the respec- 
tive House any salaried office. 



1917 

V. They shall not hold the 
office of secretary nox assistant 
secretary of any executive de- 
partment nor of justice of the 
supreme court, unless they shall 
have resigned therefrom ninety 
days immediately prior to the 
election. 

No State Governor, Secretary 
of State of the several States, nor 
State Judge shall be eligible in 
the Districts within their several 
jurisdictions, unless they shall 
have resigned from their office 
ninety days immediately prior to 
the day of election. 

VI. They shall not be minis- 
ters of any religious creed. 

Art. 56. The Senate shall 
consist of two Senators from 
each State and two from the 
Federal District, chosen in direct 
election. 

Each State Legislature shall 
certify to the election of the 
candidate who shall have ob- 
tained a majority of the total 
number of votes cast. 

[Identical with first part of 
Art. 58 A of 1857.] 

Art. 57. There shall be elected 
an alternate for each senator. 

[Identical with closing sen- 
tence of Art. 58 A of 1857.] 



Art. 58. Each senator shall 
serve four years. The senate 
shall be renewed by half every 
two years. 

[Identical with opening sen- 
tence of Art. 58 B of 1857.] 

[Identical with Art. 62 of 1917, 
excepting italicized portion.] 



Constitution of Mexico 



39 



1857 
The same provision is applicable 
to alternates when in active 
service. 

A. The Senate shall consist of 
two Senators for each State and 
two for the Federal District. 
The election of senators shall be 
direct in the first degree. Each 
State legislature shall declare 
the candidate elected who shall 
have obtained a majority of the 
votes cast or it shall choose, in 
the manner prescribed by the 
electoral law, from among those 
obtaining a pluralty. There 
shall be elected an alternate for 
each Senator. 

B. The Senate shall be re- 
newed by half every two years. 
Senators occupying the second 
place in the representation of each 
State, shall vacate their seats at 
the end of the first two years. 
After the second year the with- 
drawal shall be according to 
seniority. 

C. The qualifications neces- 
sary to be a senator shall be the 
same as those necessary to be a 
representative, except as to the 
age, which in the case of a 
senator who shall be at least 
thirty years of age on the day of 
the opening of the session. [As 
amended November IS, 1874.] 

Art. 59. Representatives and 
senators are inviolable for opin- 
ions expressed by them in the 
discharge of their duties, and 
shall never be called to account 
for them. [As amended Novem- 
ber IS, 1874.] 

Art. 60. Each House shall be 
the judge of the election of its 



1917 



[Compare Art. 58 of 1917.] 



Art. 59. The qualifications 
necessary to be a senator shall 
be the same as those necessary 
to be a representative, except- 
ing that of age, which shall be 
over thirty-jive on the day of 
election. 



[Identical with Art. 61 of 1917.] 



Art. 60. Each House shall be 
the judge of the election of its 



40 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
members, and shall decide all 
questions arising therefrom. 
[As amended November 18, 1874-\ 



Art. 61. The Houses shall not 
open their sessions nor exercise 
their functions without a quo- 
rum, in the Senate of two-thirds, 
and in the House of Representa- 
tives of a majority of the total 
of its members; but the members 
present of either House shall 
meet on the appointed day and 
compel through the proper pen- 
alties the attendance of the 



1917 
members and shall decide all 
questions arising therefrom. 
Its decisions shall be final. 

Art. 61. Representatives and 
Senators are inviolable for opin- 
ions expressed by them in the 
discharge of their duties, and 
shall never be called to account 
for them. 

[Identical with Art. 59 of 1857.] 

Art. 62. Representatives and 
senators shall be disqualified 
during the terms for which they 
have been elected from holding 
any Federal or State commission 
or office for which any emolu- 
ment is received without pre- 
vious permission of the respec- 
tive House; in the event of their 
accepting such commission or 
office they shall forthwith lose 
their representative character 
for such time as they shall hold 
such appointive office. The 
same provision shall apply to 
alternate representatives and 
senators, when in active service. 
The violation of this provision 
shall be punished by forfeiture of 
the office of representative or 
senator. 

[Identical with Art. 58 of 1857 
excepting italicized portion.] 

Art. 63. The Houses shall not 
open their sessions nor exercise 
their functions without a quo- 
rum, in the Senate of two-thirds, 
and in the House of Representa- 
tives of a majority of the total 
membership; but the members 
present of either House shall 
meet on the day appointed by 
law and compel the attendance 
of the absentees within the next 



Constitution of Mexico 



41 



1857 
absentees. [As amended Novem- 
ber 13, 1874.] 



Art. 62. The Congress shall 
hold two ordinary sessions each 
year : the first shall begin on the 
sixteenth of September and end 
on the fifteenth of December; 



1917 
thirty days, and they shall warn 
them that failure to comply with 
this provision shall be taken to be 
a refusal of office, and the corre- 
sponding alternates shall be sum- 
moned forthwith; the latter shall 
have a similar period within which 
to present themselves, and on their 
failure to do so the seats shall be 
declared vacant and new elections 
called. 

Representatives or Senators who 
shall be absent during ten consec- 
utive days without proper cause 
or without leave of the President 
of the respective House, notice of 
which shall be duly communi- 
cated to the House, shall be under- 
stood as waiving their right to 
attend until the next session, and 
their alternates shall be summoned 
without delay. 

If there shall be no quorum to 
organize either of the Houses or 
to continue their labors, once 
organized, the alternates shall be 
ordered to present themselves as 
soon as possible for the purpose 
of taking office until the expira- 
tion of the thirty days herein- 
before mentioned. 

Art. 64. No representative or 
senator who shall fail to attend 
any daily session without proper 
cause or without previous per- 
mission of the respective House, 
shall be entitled to the compensa- 
tion corresponding to the day on 
which he shall have been absent. 

Art. 65. The Congress shall 
meet on the first day of September 
of each year in regular session for 
the consideration of the following 
matters: 



42 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
but this period may be extended 
for thirty working days. The 
second shall begin on the first 
of April and end on the last day 
of May, but may be extended 
for fifteen working days. [As 
amended November 18, 1874-] 



1917 

I. To audit the accounts of 
the previous year which shall be 
submitted to the House of Rep- 
resentatives not later than ten 
days after the opening of the 
session. The audit shall not be 
confined to determining whether 
the expenditures do or do not con- 
form with the respective items in 
the Budget, but shall comprise an 
examination of the exactness of, 
and authorization for, payments 
made thereunder, and of any liabil- 
ity arising from such payments. 

No other secret items shall be 
permitted than those which the 
budget may consider necessary as 
such; these amounts shaU be paid 
out by, the secretaries of executive 
departments under written orders 
of the President. 

II. To examine, discuss and 
approve the budget for the next 
fiscal year, and to lay such taxes 
as may be needed to meet the 
expenditures. 

III. To study, discuss and 
vote on all bills presented and to 
discuss all other matters incum- 
bent upon the Congress by virtue 
of this Constitution. 

Art. 66. The regular session of 
the Congress shall last the period 
necessary to deal with all of the 
matters mentioned in the foregoing 
article, but it may not be extended, 
beyond the thirty-first day of De- 
cember of the same year. Should 
both Houses fail to agree as to ad- 
journment prior to the above date, 
the matter shall be decided by the 
executive. 

Art. 67. The Congress shall 
meet in extraordinary session 
whenever so summoned by the 



Constitution of Mexicd 



43 



1857 



Art. 63. At the opening of 
the sessions of the Congress the 
President shall be present and 
make an address in which he 
shall give information on the 
state of the country. The Pres- 
ident of the Congress shall 
reply in general terms. 



1917 
President, but in such event it 
shall consider only the matter or 
matters submitted to it by the 
President, who shall enumerate 
it or them in the respective call. 
The President shall have power 
to convene in extraordinary ses- 
sion only one of the Houses when 
the matter to be referred to it 
pertains to its exclusive juris- 
diction. 

[Substantially identical with 
Arts. 68 & 69 of 1857.] 

Art. 68. Both Houses shall 
hold their meetings in the same 
place and shall not move to 
another without having first 
agreed upon the moving and 
the time and manner of accom- 
plishing it, as well as upon the 
place of meeting, which shall be 
the same for both Houses. If 
both Houses agree to change 
their meeting place but disagree 
as to the time, manner and place 
the President shall settle the 
question by choosing one of the 
two proposals. Neither House 
may suspend its sessions for 
more than three days without 
the consent of the other. 

[Identical with Art. 71 G of 
1857 excepting italicized portion.] 

Art. 69. The President of the 
Republic shall attend at the 
opening of the sessions of the 
Congress, whether regular or 
extraordinary, and shall submit 
a report in writing; this report 
shall, in the former case, relate 
to the general state of the 
Union; and in the latter, it shall 
explain to the Congress or to 
the House addressed the reasons 
or causes which rendered the call 



44 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



Art. 64. Every measure of 
the Congress shall be in the 
form of a law or decree. The 
laws or decrees shall be com- 
municated to the Executive after 
having been signed by the Presi- 
dents of both Houses and by one 
of the secretaries of each. When 
promulgated, the enacting clause 
shall read as follows: 

"The Congress of the United 
States of Mexico decrees (text 
of the law or decree)." [As 
amended November 18, 187 4\ 



1917 
necessary and the matters re- 
quiring immediate attention. 

Art. 70. [Identical] 



PARAGRAPH II 

Of the Origin and Formation of 
Laws 

Art. 65. The right to origi- 
nate legislation pertains: 

I. To the President of the 
Republic 

II. To the Representatives 
and Senators of the Congress 

III. To the State Legislatures. 
[As amended November 18, 1874.] 

Art. 66. Bills submitted by 
the President of the Republic, by 
State Legislatures or delegations 
thereof, shall be at once referred 
to committee. Those introduced 
by representatives or senators 
shall be subject to the rules of 
procedure. [As amended Novem- 
ber 13, 1874.] 



SECTION II 

Of the Origin and Formation of 
the Laws 

Art. 71. The right to origi- 
nate legislation pertains: 

I. To the President of the 
Republic; 

II. To the Representatives and 
Senators of the Congress; 

III. To the State Legislatures. 

Bills submitted by the Presi- 
dent of the Republic, by State 
Legislatures or by delegations 
of the States shall be at once 
referred to committee. Those 
introduced by representatives or 
senators shall be subject to the 
rules of procedure. 

[Identical with Arts. 65 and 66 
of 1857] 



Constitution of Mexico 



45 



1857 
Art. 67. No bill rejected in 
the House of origin before pass- 
ing to the other House shall be 
reintroduced during the session 
of that year. [As amended 
November 13, 1874.] 

Art. 68. The second period 
of sessions shall be devoted with 
preference over all other matters, 
to the making of the necessary 
appropriations for the support 
of the Government in the follow- 
ing fiscal year, the levying of the 
taxes necessary to meet the ex- 
penses, and the examination of 
the accounts of the past year 
submitted by the Executive. 

Art. 69. The Executive shall 
transmit to the House of Repre- 
sentatives, on the eve of the last 
day of the session, the accounts 
of the year and the budget for 
the next. They shall be referred 
to a special committee, which 
shall be appointed on that day, 
consisting of five members, whose 
duty it shall be to examine both 
documents and report thereon at 
the second meeting of the second 
period. [As amended November 
13, 1874-] 

Art. 70. Legislative measures 
may be originated in either 
House, excepting bills dealing 
with loans, taxes or imposts, or 
with the raising of troops which 
must have their origin in the 
House of Representatives. [As 
amended November 13, 1874.] 

Art. 7 1 . Bills, action on which 
shall not pertain exclusively to 



1917 
[Identical with Art. 72 (g) of 
1917] 



[Identical with Art. 72 (h) of 
1917] 



Art. 72. [Identicall 



46 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
one of the Houses, shall be dis- 
cussed first by one and then by 
the other, according to the rules 
of procedure as to the form, 
time of presentation and other 
details relative to discussions 
and votes. 

A. After a bill has been ap- 
proved in the House where it 
originated it shall be sent to the 
other House for consideration. 
If passed by the latter it shall 
be transmitted to the President 
who, if he has no observa- 
tions to make thereto, shall 
immediately promulgate it. 

B. Bills not returned by the 
Executive within ten working 
days with his observations to 
the House in which they orig- 
inated, shall be considered ap- 
proved, unless during the said 
ten days the Congress shall have 
adjourned or suspended its ses- 
sions, in which event they shall 
be returned on the first working 
day after the Congress shall 
have reconvened. 

C. Bills rejected in whole 
or in part by the Executive 
shall be returned with his 
observations to the House 
where they originated. They 
shall be discussed anew by the 
latter and if passed by a major- 
ity vote shall be sent to the 
other. If approved by it, also 
by the same majority vote, the 
bill shall become a law and shall 
be sent, to the Executive for 
promulgation. In such cases 
the voting in both Houses shall 
be by yeas and nays. 



1917 



(a) [Identical] 



(b) [Identical] 



(c) Bills rejected in whole or 
in part by the Executive shall be 
returned with his observations 
to the House where they origi- 
nated. They shall be discussed 
anew by this House and if con- 
firmed by a two-thirds majority 
vote of the total membership shall 
be sent to the other House for 
reconsideration. If approved by 
it, also by the same majority 
vote, the bill shall become law 
and shall be returned to the 
Executive for promulgation. 

The voting in both Houses 
shall be by yeas and nays. 



Constitution of Mexico 47 

1857 1917 

D. Bills totally rejected by (d) [Identical] 
the House not originating 

them shall be returned with 
the proper observations to 
the House of origin. If exam- 
ined anew and approved by a 
majority of the members pres- 
ent, they shall be returned to 
the House rejecting them, which 
shall once again take them under 
consideration, and if approved 
by it, likewise by the same 
majority vote, they shall be sent 
to the Executive for the pur- 
poses of Clause A; but if the 
said House fail to approve them, 
they shall not be reintroduced 
in the same session. 

E. Bills rejected in part or (e) [Identical] 
modified or amended by the 

House of revision shall be dis- 
cussed anew in the House of 
origin, but the discussion shall 
be confined to the portion re- 
jected or to the amendments or 
additions, without the approved 
articles being altered in any 
respect. If the additions or 
amendments made by the House 
of revision be approved by a 
majority vote of the members 
present in the House of origin, 
the bill shall be transmitted to 
the Executive for the purposes of 
Clause A; but if the amendments 
or additions by the House of 
revision be rejected by a major- 
ity vote of the House of origin 
they shall be returned to the 
former House in order that the 
reasons set forth by the latter 
may be taken into consideration. 



48 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 1917 

If in this second revision the 
said additions or amendments 
be rejected by a majority vote 
of the members present the 
portion of the bill which has 
been approved by both Houses 
shall be sent to the Executive 
for the purposes of Clause A. 
If the House of revision insist 
by a majority vote of the mem- 
bers present upon the additions 
or amendments, no action shall 
be taken on the whole bill until 
the next session, unless both 
Houses agree, by a majority vote 
of the members present, to the 
promulgation of the law without 
the articles objected to, which 
shall be left till the next session, 
when they shall be then dis- 
cussed and voted upon. 

F. The same formalities as (f) [Identica ] 
are required for the enactment 
of laws shall be observed for 
their interpretation, amendment 
or repeal. 



G. Both Houses shall hold 
their meetings at the same 
place, and shall not move to 
another without first having 
agreed upon the moving and the 
time and manner of accomplish- 
ing it, as well as upon the place 
of meeting which shall be the 
same for both Houses. If both 
Houses agree to change their 
meeting place, but disagree as 
to the time, manner or locality, 
the Executive shall settle the 
question. Neither House shall 
adjourn for more than three 
days without the consent of the 
other. 



[Identical with Art. 68 of 191 7] 



Constitution of Mexico 



49 



1857 



H. When Congress meets in 
extra session it shall deal exclu- 
sively with the matter or matters 
specified in the call. If the 
object of the extra session has 
not been accomplished at the 
time in which the ordinary ses- 
sion begins, there shall be, 
nevertheless, a formal closing 
of the extra session, and the 
unfinished business shall be taken 
up and discussed in the ordinary 
session. 

The Executive shall not make 
any observations touching the 
resolutions of the Congress pro- 
viding for an adjournment of its 
sessions, or passed by it when 
sitting as an electoral body or 
as a grand jury. [As amended 
November 13, 1874.] 



1917 

(g) No bill rejected in the 
House of origin before passing 
to the other House shall be 
reintroduced during the session 
of that year. 

[Identical with Art. 67 of 1857] 

(h) Legislative measures may 
be originated in either House, 
excepting bills dealingwith loans, 
taxes or imposts, or with the 
raising of troops which must 
have their origin in the House of 
Representatives. 

[Identical with Art. 70 of 1857] 

(i) Whenever a bill shall be 
presented to one House it shall be 
first discussed there unless one 
month shall have elapsed since it 
was referred to committee and not 
reported, in which event an iden- 
tical bill may be presented and 
discussed in the other House. 

(j) The President shall not 
make any observations touching 
the resolutions of the Congress 
or of either House when acting 
as an electoral body or as a 
grand jury, nor when the House 
of Representatives shall declare 
that there are grounds to impeach 
any high federal authority for 
official offences. 

Nor shall he make any obser- 
vations touching the order for a 
call issued by the Permanent 
Committee as provided in Article 
84. 



50 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



1917 



PARAGRAPH III 

Of the Powers of the Congress 

Art. 72. The Congress shall 
have power: 

I. To admit new States or 
Territories into the Federal Un- 
ion, incorporating them into the 
Nation. 

II. To grant statehood to 
Territories which have a popu- 
lation of eighty thousand inhab- 
itants and the necessary means 
to provide for their political 
existence. 

III. To form new States 
within the boundaries of exist- 
ing ones, provided the following 
requisites are complied with: 

1. That the section or sections 
aspiring to statehood have a 
population of one hundred and 
twenty thousand inhabitants at 
least; 

2. That proof be given to the 
Congress that it has sufficient 
means to provide for its political 
existence; 

3. That the legislatures of the 
States affected be heard as to 
the advisability or inadvisabil- 
ity of granting such statehood, 
which opinion shall be given 
within six months reckoned from 
the day on which the respective 
communication is forwarded ; 

4. That the opinion of the 
Executive of the Federal Gov- 
ernment be also heard on the 
subject; this opinion shall be 
given within seven days after the 
date on which it was requested. 

5. That the creation of the 
new State be voted upon favor- 
ably by two-thirds of the Repre- 



SECTION III 

Of the Powers of the Congress 

Art. 73. The Congress shall 
have power: 

I. To admit new States or 
Territories into the Federal Un- 
ion. 

II. [Identical] 



III. [Identical] 



Constitution of Mexico 



51 



1857 
sentatives and Senators present 
in their respective Houses. 

6. That the resolution of the 
Congress be ratified by a major- 
ity of the State Legislatures, 
upon examination of a copy 
of the record of the case, pro- 
vided that the Legislatures of 
the States to which the section 
belongs shall have given their 
consent. 

7. That the ratification re- 
ferred to in the foregoing clause 
be given by two-thirds of the 
legislatures of the other States, 
if the legislatures of the States 
to which the Section belongs 
have not given their consent. 
[As amended November 18, 1874.} 

IV. To settle finally the limits 
of the States, terminating the 
differences which may arise be- 
tween them relative to the 
demarcation of their respective 
territories, except when the dif- 
ferences be of a litigious nature. 

V. To change the residence of 
the supreme powers of the Fed- 
eration. 

VI. To legislate in all matters 
relating to the Federal District 
and the Territories. 



1917 



IV. [Identical] 



V. [Identical] 

VI. To legislate in all matters 
relating to the Federal District 
and the Territories, as herein- 
after provided: 

1. The Federal District and the 
Territories shall be divided into 
municipalities, each of which 
shall have the area and popula- 
tion sufficient for its own support 
and for its contribution toward 
the common expenses. 

2. Each municipality shall be 
governed by a town council elected 
by direct vote of the people. 

3. The Federal District and 
each of the Territories shall be 
administered by governors under 
the direct orders of the President 
of the Republic. The Governor of 



52 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

the Federal District shall despatch 
with the President, and the Gover- 
nor of each Territory shall des- 
patch with the President through 
the duly constituted channels. 
The Governor of the Federal Dis- 
trict and the Governor of each 
Territory shall be appointed by 
the President and may be removed 
by him at will. 

4. The Superior Judges and 
those of First Instance of the 
Federal District as well as of the 
Territories shall be named by the 
Congress, acting in each case as 
an electoral college. In the tem- 
porary or permanent absences of 
the said Superior Judges these 
shall be replaced by appointment 
of the Congress, and in recess by 
temporary appointments of the 
Permanent Committee. The or- 
ganic law shall determine the 
manner of filling temporary va- 
cancies in the case of judges, and 
shall designate the authority be- 
fore whom they shall be called 
to account for any dereliction, 
excepting the provisions of this 
Constitution with regard to the 
responsibility of officials. From 
and after the year 192S the 
Superior Judges and those of 
First Instance to which this 
clause refers may only be removed 
from office for bad conduct and 
after impeachment, unless they 
shall have been promoted to the 
next higher grade. From and 
after the said date the compensa- 
tion enjoyed by said officials shall 
not be diminished during their 
term of office. 

5. The office of the Public 
Attorney (Ministerio Publico) of 
the Federal District and of the 



Constitution of Mexico 



53 



1857 



VII. To lay the taxes neces- 
sary to meet the expenditures of 
the budget. 

VIII. To establish the bases 
upon which the Executive may 
make loans on the credit of the 
nation; to approve the said 
loans and to acknowledge and 
order the payment of the national 
debt. 

IX. To enact laws fixing the 
duties to be levied on foreign com- 
merce, and to prevent by gen- 
eral provisions, onerous, restric- 
tions from being imposed on 
interstate commerce. 

X. To promulgate mining and 
commercial codes, which shall be 
binding throughout the whole 
Republic. The banking law shall 
form a part of the code of com- 
merce. [As amended December 
14, 1888.] 

XI. To create or abolish Fed- 
eral offices, and to fix, increase, 
or decrease the compensations 
assigned thereto. 

XII. To confirm the nomina- 
tions made by the Executive, of 
ministers, diplomatic agents, and 



1917 
Territories; shall be in charge of 
an Attorney General, who shall 
reside in the City of Mexico and 
of such Public Attorney or Attor- 
neys as the law may determine; 
the said Attorney General shall 
be under the direct orders of the 
President of the Republic, who 
shall appoint and remove him at 
will. 
VII. [Identical] 



VIII. [Identical] 



IX. To enact tariff laws on 
foreign commerce and to prevent 
restrictions from being imposed 
on interstate commerce. 



X. To legislate for the entire 
Republic in all matters relating 
to mining, commerce, and insti- 
tutions of credit, and to establish 
the sole bank of issue, as provided 
in Article 28 of this Constitution. 



XL [Identical] 



54 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
consuls, superior officers of the 
treasury, colonels and other su- 
perior officers of the national 
army and navy. [Transferred to 
Art. 72 B, II, Exclusive Powers of 
the Senate, November 18, 1874.] 

XIII. To approve the treaties, 
agreements, or diplomatic con- 
ventions which the Executive 
may make. {Transferred to Art. 
72 B, I, Exclusive Powers of the 
Senate, November 18, 1874.) 

XIV. To declare war, upon 
examination of the facts sub- 
mitted by the Executive. 

XV. To regulate the manner 
in which letters of marque may 
be issued; to enact laws accord- 
ing to which prizes on sea and 
land shall be adjudged valid or 
invalid; and to frame the ad- 
miralty law for times of peace 
and war. 

XVI. To grant or refuse per- 
mission to foreign troops to enter 
the territory of the Republic, and 
to allow fleets of other powers to 
remain for more than one month 
in the waters of the Republic. 

[Transferred to Art. 72 B, III, 
Exclusive Powers of Senate, No- 
vember IS, 1874.] 

XVII. To allow national 
troops to go beyond the limits 
of the republic. 

[Transferred to AH. 72 B, HI, 
Exclusive Powers of Senate, No- 
vember 18, 1874.] 

XVIII. To raise and maintain 
the army and navy of the Union, 
and to regulate their organiza- 
tion and service. 

XIX. To make rules for the 
organization armament, and 



1917 



XII. [Identical] 



XIII. [Identical] 



XIV. [Identical] 



XV. To make rules for the 
organization and discipline of 



Constitution of Mexico 



55 



1857 
discipline of the national guard, 
reserving respectively to the 
citizens who compose it the ap- 
pointment of the commanders 
and officers, and to the States 
the power of instructing it in 
conformity with the discipline 
prescribed by said regulations. 

XX. To consent to the use by 
the Executive of the national 
guard outside of its respective 
States and Territories, determin- 
ing the strength of the force 
required. 

[Transferred to Art. 72 B, IV, 
Exclusive Powers of Senate, No- 
vember 13, 1874.] 

XXI. To enact laws on citi- 
zenship, naturalization, coloni- 
zation, emigration, immigration 
and public health of the Repub- 
lic. 



1917 
the National Guard, reserving 
for the citizens who compose it 
the right of appointing their 
respective commanders and of- 
ficers, and to the States the 
power of instructing it in con- 
formity with the discipline pre- 
scribed by the said regulations. 



XVI. To enact laws on citi- 
zenship, naturalization, coloni- 
zation, emigration, immigration 
and public health of the Republic. 

1. The Public Health Service 
shall depend directly upon the 
President of the Republic, with- 
out the intervention of any execu- 
tive department, and its general 
provisions shallbebinding through- 
out the Republic. 

2. In the event of epidemics of 
a grave or dangerous nature, of 
the invasion of diseases from 
abroad, the Public Health Service 
shall put into force without 
delay the necessary preventive 
measures, subject to their sub- 
sequent sanction by the President 
of the Republic. 

3. The sanitary authorities shall 
have executive faculties and their 
determinations shall be obeyed by 
the administrative authorities of 
the country. 

4. All measures which the Pub- 
lic Health Service shall have put 
into effect in its campaign against 
alcoholism and the sale of sub- 



56 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



XXII. To enact laws on the 
general means of communication 
and on post-roads and post- 
offices, to define and determine 
the waters subject to Federal 
jurisdiction and to enact laws 
as to the use and development 
of the same. [As amended June 
20, 1908.] 

XXIII. To establish mints, 
regulate the value and kinds of 
the national coin, fix the value 
of foreign moneys, and adopt a 
general system of weights and 
measures. 

XXIV. To make rules for the 
occupation and alienation of pub- 
lic lands and the prices thereof. 



XXV. To grant pardons for 
offenses subject to federal juris- 
diction. 

XXVI. To grant rewards and 
recompenses for eminent serv- 
ices rendered to the country or 
to humanity. [A s amended June 
2, 1882.] 

XXVII. To extend for thirty 
working days the first period of 
its ordinary sessions. 

XXVIII. To make rules for 
its internal government and to 
enact the necessary provisions 
to compel the attendance of 
absent Representatives and Sen- 
ators and to punish the acts of 
commission or omission of those 
present. 



1917 
stances injurious to man and 
tending to degenerate the race 
shall be subsequently revised by 
the Congress, in such cases as fall 
within the jurisdiction of the latter. 
XVII. To enact laws on gen- 
eral means of communication, 
postroads and post offices and 
to enact laws as to the use and 
development of the waters sub- 
ject to the Federal jurisdiction. 



XVIII. [Identical] 



XIX. [Identical] 



XX. To enact laws as to the 
organization of the diplomatic and 
consular services. 

XXI. To define the crimes and 
offenses against the Nation and 
to fix the penalties therefor. 

XXII. [Identical] 



XXIII. [Identical] 



Constitution of Mexico 



57 



1857 
XXIX. To issue the organic 
law of the office of the Comp- 
troller of the Treasury. 



1917 

XXIV. [Identical] 

XXV. To sit as an electoral 
college and to name the Justices 
of the Supreme Court, and the 
Superior and Inferior Judges of 
the Federal District and Terri- 
tories. 

XXVI. To accept the resigna- 
tion of the Justices of the Supreme 
Court and of the Superior and 
Inferior Judges of the Federal 
District and Territories, and to 
name substitutes in their absence 
and to appoint their successors. 

XXVII. To establish profes- 
sional schools of scientific research 
and fine arts, vocational, agri- 
cultural and trade schools, mu- 
seums, libraries, observatories and 
other institutes of higher learning, 
until such time as these establish- 
ments can be supported by private 
funds. These powers shall not 
pertain exclusively to the Federal 
Government. 

All degrees conferred by any of 
the above institutions shall be 
valid throughout the Republic. 

XXVIII. To sit as an elec- 
toral college and to choose the 
person to assume the office of 
President of the Republic, either 
as a substitute President or as a 
President ad interim in the terms 
established by Articles 84 and 85 
of this Constitution. 



XXIX. To accept the resig- 
nation of the President of the 
Republic. 

[Compare Art. 72 A, II of 
1857.] 



58 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



XXX. To make all laws nec- 
essary for carrying into execu- 
tion the foregoing powers and all 
other powers vested by this Con- 
stitution in the several branches 
of the Government. 

A. The House of Representa- 
tives shall have the following ex- 
clusive powers: 

I. To sit as an electoral college 
to exercise the powers conferred 
by law regarding the appoint- 
ments of constitutional President 
and Vice President of the Repub- 
lic, justices of the supreme court 
and senators for the Federal 
District. [A mendment of May 6, 
1904.] 

II. To pass upon the resigna- 
tions and leaves of absence of 
the President and Vice President 
of the Republic and of the resigr 
nations of the justices of the 
supreme court. [As amended 
May 6, 1904.] 

III. To watch, by means of 
a special committee, over the 
faithful performance by the 
Comptroller of the Treasury in 
the discharge of his duties. 

IV. To appoint all the higher 
officers and other employees of 
the office of the Comptroller of 
the Treasury. 

V. To act as a grand jury and 
to formulate articles of impeach- 
ment against the functionaries 



1917 

XXX. To audit the accounts 
which shall be submitted annu- 
ally by the Executive; this audit 
shall comprise not only the check- 
ing of the items disbursed under 
the Budget but the exactness of 
and authorization for the expendi- 
tures in each case. 17 

XXXI. [Identical] 



Art. 74. The House of Repre- 
sentatives shall have the follow- 
ing exclusive powers: 

I. To sit as an electoral college 
to exercise the powers conferred 
by law as to the election of the 
President. 



II. To watch by means of 
a committee appointed from 
among its own members over 
the faithful performance by the 
Comptroller of the Treasury 
in the discharge of his duties. 

III. [Identical] 



[Compare Art. 74, V, of 1917] 

"See Ajt, 72 A, VI, of 1857. 



Constitution of Mexico 



59 



1857 
mentioned in article 103 of the 
Constitution. 

VI. To audit the accounts 
to be rendered yearly by the 
Executive, approve the annual 
budget, and originate taxation 
for the purpose of meeting the 
expenses of the Government. 



B. The Senate shall have the 
following exclusive powers : 

I. To approve the treaties 
and diplomatic conventions con- 
cluded by the Executive with 
foreign powers. 

II. To confirm the nomina- 
tions made by the President of 
diplomatic ministers or agents, 
consuls general, higher officials 
of the treasury, colonels and 



1917 



IV. To approve the annual 
budget, after a discussion as to 
what taxes must in its judgment 
be laid to meet the necessary 
expenditures. 

V. To take cognizance of all 
charges brought against public 
officials, as herein provided, for 
official offenses, and should the 
circumstances so warrant to 
impeach them before the Senate; 
and further to act as a grand 
jury to decide whether there is 
or is not good ground for pro- 
ceeding against any official en- 
joying constitutional privileges, 
whenever accused of offenses of 
the common order. 

VI. Toexercisesuchotherpowers 
as may be expressly vested in it by 
this Constitution. 

Art. 75. The House of Repre- 
sentatives, in passing the budget, 
shall not fail to assign a definite 
compensation to every office created 
by law, and if for any reason such 
compensation shallnotbe assigned, 
the amount fixed in the preceding 
budget or in the law creating the 
office shall be presumed to be 
assigned. 

Art. 76. 

I. [Identical] 



II. [Identical] 



60 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
other superior officers of the 
army and navy, in the manner 
and form by law provided. 

III. To authorize the Execu- 
tive to allow national troops to 
go beyond the limits of the 
Republic, or to permit foreign 
troops to pass through the 
national territory, and to con- 
sent to the presence of fleets 
of another nation for more than 
one month in Mexican waters. 

IV. To consent to the Execu- 
tive disposing of the national 
guard outside of the limits of its 
respective States or Territories, 
and to fix the amount of the 
force to be used. 

V. To declare, when all the 
constitutional powers of any 
State have disappeared, that the 
occasion has arisen to give the 
said State a provisional governor, 
who shall order elections to be 
held according to the consti- 
tution and laws of the State. 
The appointment of such gover- 
nor shall be made by the Fed- 
eral Executive with the approval 
of the Senate, or in its recess, 
of the permanent committee. 
The said functionary shall not 
be chosen constitutional gover- 
nor in the elections to be held 
under the call which he shall 
issue. 



1917 



III. [Identical] 



IV. [Identical] 



V. To declare, when all the 
constitutional powers of any 
State have disappeared, that the 
occasion has arisen to give to 
the said State a provisional gov- 
ernor, who shall call for elections 
to be held according to the con- 
stitution and laws of the said 
State. The appointment of 
such a governor shall be made 
by the Senate with the approval 
of two-thirds of its members pres- 
ent or during recess by the Per- 
manent Committee by the same 
two-thirds majority, from among 
three names submitted by the Presi- 
dent. The official thus selected 
shall not be chosen constitu- 
tional governor in the elections 
to be held under the call which 
he shall issue. This provision 
shall govern whenever the State 
Constitutions do not provide for 
the contingency. 

VI. To sit as a Grand Jury 
to take cognizance of such official 
offenses of functionaries as are 



Constitution of Mexico 



61 



1857 



VI. To adjust all political 
questions arising between the 
powers of a State whenever one 
of them shall appeal to the 
Senate or whenever by virtue of 
such differences a clash of arms 
has arisen to interrupt the 
constitutional order. In this 
event the Senate shall decide in 
accordance with the Federal 
Constitution and the Constitu- 
tion of the State involved. 

The exercise of this power and 
of the foregoing shall be regu- 
lated by law. 

VII. To sit as a court of im- 
peachment, under article 105 of 
the Constitution. [As amended 
November IS, 1874.] 

C. Each House may, without 
the intervention of the other: 

I. Pass resolutions upon mat- 
ters exclusively relating to its 
own interior government. 

II. Communicate with the 
other House, and with the Ex- 
ecutive through committees ap- 
pointed from among its members. 

III. Appoint the employees 
in the office of its secretary, and 
make all rules and regulations 
for the said office. 

IV. Issue a call for extraor- 
dinary elections to fill any vacan- 
cies which may occur in its 
membership. [As amended No- 
vember 13, 1874.] 



1917 
expressly prescribed by this Con- 
stitution. 

VII. To exercise such other 
powers as may be expressly vested 
in it by this Constitution. 

VIII. [Identical] 



Art. 77. [Identical] 



62 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



1917 



PARAGRAPH IV 

Of the Permanent Committee 

Art. 73. During the recesses 
of the Congress there shall be a 
Permanent Committee consist- 
ing of twenty-nine members, 
fifteen of whom shall be Repre- 
sentatives and fourteen Sena- 
tors, appointed by the respective 
Houses on the eve of the day of 
adjournment. [As amended No- 
vember 18, 1874-] 

Art. 74. In addition to the 
powers vested in it by this Con- 
stitution, the Permanent Com- 
mittee shall have the following 
powers : 

I. To give its consent to the 
use of the national guard as 
provided in Article 72, Clause 
XX. [As amended May 6, 1904.] 



II. To decide upon the call 
for extraordinary sessions of the 
Congress or of a single House 
thereof, either on its own ini- 
tiative, in which event it shall 
hear the opinion of the Execu- 
tive, or on the proposal of the 
Executive; in either event, the 



SECTION IV 

Of the Permanent Committee 

Art. 78. During the recess of 
the Congress there shall be a 
Permanent Committee consist- 
ing of twenty-nine members, 
fifteen of whom shall be Repre- 
sentatives and fourteen Sena- 
tors, appointed by the respective 
Houses on the eve of the day of 
adjournment. 

Art. 79. In addition to the 
powers expressly vested in it by 
this Constitution, the Perma- 
nent Committee shall have the 
following powers: 

I. To give its consent to the 
use of the national guard as 
provided in Article 76, Clause 
IV. 

II. To administer the oath of 
office, should the occasion arise, 
to the President, to the Justices 
of the Supreme Court, to the 
Superior Judges of the Federal 
District and Territories, on such 
occasions as the latter officials 
may happen to be in the City of 
Mexico. 

[Compare Art. 74, IV of 1857.] 

III. To report on all pending 
matters, so that they may be 
considered in the next session. 

[Compare Art. 74, V of 1857.] 

IV. To call extraordinary ses- 
sions in the case of official 
offenses or offenses of the com- 
mon order committed by Secre- 
taries of Executive Departments 
or Justices of the Supreme Court, 
and official offenses committed 
by State Governors, provided the 



Constitution of Mexico 



63 



1857 

two-thirds' vote of the members 
present shall be necessary. The 
call shall stipulate the object or 
objects of the extraordinary ses- 
sion. [As amended November 
13, 1874.] 

III. To confirm the nomina- 
tions referred to in article 85, 
Clause III. 

IV. To administer the oath 
of office to the President of the 
Republic, and to the justices of 
the supreme court, in the cases 
provided for by this Constitu- 
tion. 

V. To report upon all pending 
matters, in order that the next 
legislature may immediately con- 
sider them. 



1917 
case shall have been already 
instituted by the Committee of 
the Grand Jury, in which event 
no other business of the Congress 
shall be considered, nor shall the 
sessions be prolonged beyond 
the time necessary for a decision. 



SECTION II 

Of the Executive Power 

Art. 75. The exercise of the 
supreme executive power of the 
Union is vested in a single indi- 
vidual, who shall be called 
" President of the United States 
of Mexico." 

Art. 76. The election of Presi- 
dent shall be direct, in accord- 
ance with the terms of the 
electoral law. [As amended April 
26, 1912.] 

Art. 77. No person shall be 
eligible to the office of Presi- 
dent who is not a Mexican citi- 
zen by birth, in the exercise of 
his rights, over thirty-five years 
old at the time of the election, 
not belonging to the ecclesias- 
tical state, and a resident of the 
country at the time in which 
the election is held. 



CHAPTER III 

Of the Executive Power 
Art. 80. [Identical] 



Art. 81. [Identical] 



Art. 82. The President of the 
Republic shall have the follow- 
ing qualifications: 

I. He shall be a Mexican citi- 
zen by birth, in the full enjoyment 
of his rights, and he must be the 
son of Mexican parents by birth. 

II. He shall be over thirty- 
five years of age at the time of 
election. 



64 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



Art. 78. The President and 
Vice-President shall enter upon 
their duties on the first day of 
December, shall serve six years, 
and shall never be reelected. 

The President shall never be 
elected Vice-President, nor the 
Vice-President be elected Presi- 
dent for the ensuing term. 

Nor may the Secretary of 
the Executive Department 
charged with the executive power 
at the time of the elections be 
elected President or Vice-Presi- 
dent. [As amended November 
27, 1911.] 

Art. 79. The electors who 
choose the President shall like- 
wise, on the same day and in 
the same manner, choose a 
Vice-President, who shall have 
the same qualifications as by 
Article 77 are required for the 
office of President. 

The Vice-President shall be 
ex officio President of the Sen- 



1917 

III. He shall have resided in 
the country during the entire 
year prior to the election. 

IV. He shall not belong to the 
ecclesiastical state nor be a 
minister of any religious creed. 

V. In the event of belonging to 
the army, he shall have retired 
from active service 90 days imme- 
diately prior to the election. 

VI. He shall not be a secretary 
or assistant secretary of any exec- 
utive department, unless he shall 
have, resigned from office 90 days 
prior to the election. 

VII. He shall not have taken 
part, directly or indirectly, in any 
uprising, riot or military coup. 

Art. 83. The President shall 
enter upon the duties of his 
office on the first day of Decem- 
ber, shall serve four years and 
shall never be reelected. 

The citizen who shall replace the 
constitutional President in the 
event of his permanent disability 
shall not be elected President for 
the ensuing term. 

Nor shall the person desig- 
nated as Acting President during 
the temporary disabilities of the 
constitutional President be re- 
elected President for the ensuing 
term. 



Constitution of Mexico 



65 



1857 
ate; he shall have no voice and 
shall only be entitled to a vote 
in the event of a tie. The Vice 
President may, however, fill 
any appointive office of the 
Executive; in the event of dis- 
ability caused by such appoint- 
ment or by other causes, he shall 
be replaced as President of the 
Senate, as provided in the re- 
spective law. [As amended May 
6, 1904.] 

Art. 80. Whenever the Presi- 
dent shall fail to present himself 
on the day set by law to assume 
office, or whenever a permanent 
disability occur during his term 
of office or he be granted permis- 
sion to leave his office, the Vice- 
President shall assume the exer- 
cise of the Executive Power by 
operation of law, without the 
need of a new oath of office. 

If the disability of the Presi- 
dent be permanent the Vice- 
President shall complete the 
term for which he was elected ; 
in all other cases, he shall serve 
until the President resume office. 
[As amended May 6, 1904.] 



1917 



Art. 84. In the event of the 
permanent disability of the Presi- 
dent of the Republic, if this shall 
occur within the first two years of 
the respective term, the Congress, 
if in session, shall forthwith act 
as an electoral college, and with 
the attendance of at least two- 
thirds of its total membership 
shall choose a President by secret 
ballot and by a majority vote; and 
the same Congress shall issue the 
call for Presidential elections and 
shall endeavor to have the date set 
for this event as far as possible 
coincide with the date of the next 
election of Representatives and 
Senators to Congress. 

Should the disability of the 
president occur while Congress 
is in recess, the Permanent Com- 
mittee shall forthwith designate a 
President ad interim who shall 
call Congress together in extra- 
ordinary session, in order that it 
may in turn issue the call for 
Presidential elections in the man- 
ner provided in the foregoing 
paragraph. 

Should the disability of the 
President occur in the last two 
years of the respective term, the 
Congress, if in session, shall 



66 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



Art. 81. If neither the Presi- 
dent Elect nor the Vice-Presi- 
dent Elect shall present himself 
at the beginning of any consti- 
tutional term, or the election 
not have been made and the 
result made known by the first 
of December, the outgoing Pres- 
ident shall nevertheless vacate 
office and the Secretary of For- 
eign Affairs shall forthwith as- 
sume the executive power; in the 
absence or disability of the 
secretary of Foreign Affairs, one 
of the secretaries of the execu- 
tive departments, in the order 
established by law, shall forth- 
with assume the executive power. 

The same procedure shall be 
observed when, in the event of 
the permanent or temporary 
disability of the President, the 
Vice President shall not present 



1917 

choose the substitute to conclude 
the period of the presidential 
term; if Congress shall not be in 
session the Permanent Committee 
shall choose a President ad interim 
and shall summon Congress in 
extraordinary session, in order 
that it may act as an electoral 
college and proceed to the election 
of the substitute President. 

The President ad interim may 
be chosen by Congress as sub- 
stitute President. 

The citizen designated as Pre- 
sident ad interim for the purpose 
of calling elections, in the event of 
the disability of the President 
within the two first years of the 
respective term, shall not be chosen 
in the elections held to fill such 
vacancy and for which he was 
designated. 

Art. 85. If the President- 
Elect shall fail to present him- 
self at the beginning 'of any con- 
stitutional term, or the election 
not have been held and the 
result made known by the first 
of December, the outgoing Pres- 
ident shall nevertheless vacate 
office and the President ad interim 
chosen by the Congress, or in its 
recess by the Permanent Com- 
mittee, shall forthwith assume the 
executive power. All action taken 
hereunder shall be governed by 
the provisions of the foregoing 
article. 

In case of a temporary dis- 
ability of the President, the Con- 
gress, or the Permanent Commit- 
tee if the Congress shall not be in 
session, shall designate an Acting 
President during such disability. 
If a temporary disability shall 



Constitution of Mexico 



67 



1857 
himself, when the latter shall be 
granted leave to resign, if he 
shall be in office, and when the 
permanent disability of both 
functionaries shall occur during 
the term of office. 

In the event of the permanent 
disability of the President and 
Vice President, the Congress, 
or in its recess the Permanent 
Committee, shall immediately 
issue a call for extraordinary 
elections. 

Should the disability of both 
functionaries occur in the last 
year of the constitutional term, 
no call shall be issued, but the 
secretary who shall assume the 
executive power shall continue 
charged with the same until the 
new President, or the person to 
act in his stead according to the 
preceding provisions, shall take 
office. 

The citizens chosen in the 
extraordinary elections shall as- 
sume office so soon as the cor- 
responding declaration be made, 
and they shall continue in office 
for the balance of the constitu- 
tional term. Whenever a secre- 
tary of an executive department 
shall be called upon to assume 
the executive power, he shall 
discharge this office without 
need of an affirmation, until 
such time as he is able to make 
it. [As amended, May 6, 1904-] 

Art. 82. Neither the Presi- 
dent nor Vice-President shall 
resign office except for grave 
cause, upon which the Congress 
shall pass,- to which body the 
resignations shall be presented. 
[As amended, May 6, 1904-] 



1917 
become permanent, the action pre- 
scribed in the preceding article 
shall be taken. 

In the event of a leave of absence 
granted to the President of the 
Republic the person acting in his 
stead shall not be disqualified 
from being elected in the ensuing 
period, provided he shall not 
have been in office during the 
holding of elections. 



Art. 86. The President shall 
not resign office except for grave 
cause, upon which the Congress 
shall pass, to which body the 
resignation shall be tendered. 



68 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 

Art. 83. The President, before 
entering upon the discharge of 
the duties of his office, shall 
make the following affirmation 
before the Congress, or in its 
recess before the Permanent 
Committee: 

"I do solemnly affirm that I 
will defend and enforce the Con- 
stitution of the United States of 
Mexico and the laws arising 
thereunder and that I will faith- 
fully and conscientiously per- 
form the duties of President of 
the United States of Mexico, 
to which I have been chosen by 
the people, having ever in mind 
the welfare and prosperity of 
the Nation." 

The Vice-President shall in 
the same session make an affir- 
mation in similar language to dis- 
charge the duties of Vice Presi- 
dent, or, should the occasion 
arise, those of President; if he 
shall be unable to make the 
affirmation at the same session 
as the President, he shall do so 
at another session. [A s amended, 
May 6, 1904.] 

Art. 84. The President and 
the Vice-President shall not 
absent themselves from the na- 
tional territory, without the per- 
mission of the House of Repre- 
sentatives. [As amended, May 6, 
1904.] 

Art. 85. The President shall 
have the following powers and 
duties: 

I. To promulgate and execute 
the laws enacted by the Con- 
gress, providing, within the ex- 
ecutive sphere, for their faith- 
ful observance. 



191.7 

Art. 87. The President, before 
entering upon the discharge of 
the duties of his office, shall 
make the following affirmation 
before the Congress, or in its 
recess before the Permanent 
Committee : 

"I do solemnly affirm that I 
will defend and enforce the Con- 
stitution of the United States of 
Mexico and the laws arising 
thereunder and that I will faith- 
fully and conscientiously per- 
form the duties of President of 
the United States of Mexico, 
to which I have been chosen by 
the people, having ever in mind 
the welfare and prosperity of 
the Nation; if I shall fail to do 
so, may the Nation call me to 
account." 



Art. 88. The President shall 
not absent himself from the 
national territory without the 
permission of the Congress. 



Art. 89. 

I. [Identical] 



Constitution of Mexico 



69 



1857 
II. To appoint and remove 
at will the secretaries of execu- 
tive departments, to remove the 
diplomatic agents and superior 
officers of the treasury, and to 
appoint and remove at will the 
other federal officials whose ap- 
pointment or removal is not 
otherwise provided for in the 
Constitution or the laws. 



III. To appoint, with the ap- 
proval of the Congress, and, 
in its recess, of the Permanent 
Committee, ministers, diplomatic 
agents, and consuls general. 

IV. To appoint, with the ap- 
proval of Congress, colonels and 
other superior officers of the 
national army and navy, and 
superior officials of the treasury. 

V. To appoint all other officers 
of the national army and navy, 
as by law provided. 

VI. To dispose of the perma- 
nent land and sea forces for the 
domestic safety and foreign de- 
fense of the Union. 

VII. To dispose of the na- 
tional guard for the same pur- 
poses, as provided by Article 72, 
Clause XX. 



1917 

II. To appoint and remove at 
will the Secretaries of Executive 
Departments, the Attorney Gen- 
eral of the Republic, the Governor 
of the Federal District, the Gov- 
ernors of Territories, the Attorney 
General of the Federal District 
and Territories; and to appoint 
and remove at will all other 
Federal employees whose ap- 
pointment or removal is not 
otherwise provided for by law 
or in this Constitution. 

III. To appoint, with the ap- 
proval of the Senate, all minis- 
ters, diplomatic agents and con- 
suls general. 

IV. To appoint, with the ap- 
proval of the Senate, the colonels 
and other superior officers of 
the army and navy and the 
superior officials of the treasury. 

V. [Identical] 



VI. [Identical] 



VII. To dispose of the na- 
tional guard for the same pur- 
poses, as provided by Article 76, 
Clause IV. 



VIII. To declare war in the 
name of the United States of 
Mexico, after the passage of the 
corresponding resolution by the 
Congress of the Union. 

IX. To grant letters of marque, 
upon the terms and conditions 
fixed by the Congress. 

X. To conduct diplomatic ne- 
gotiations and to make treaties 



VIII. [Identical] 

IX. [Identical] 

X. [Identical] 



70 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
with foreign powers, submitting 
them for ratification to the Con- 
gress. 

XI. To receive ministers and 
other envoys from foreign pow- 
ers. 

XII. To call, upon resolution 
of the Permanent Committee, an 
extra session of the Congress. 

XIII. To afford the judiciary 
the assistance necessary for the 
expeditious exercise of its func- 
tions. 

XIV. To open all kinds of 
ports, establish maritime and 
frontier custom houses and des- 
ignate their location. 

XV. To grant, according to 
law, pardons to criminals sen- 
tenced for offenses within the 
jurisdiction of the Federal tri- 
bunals. 



XVI. To grant exclusive priv- 
ileges for a limited time, and 
according to the respective laws, 
to discoverers, inventors or im- 
provers in any branch of indus- 
try. [As amended, June 2, 1882.] 



1917 



XI. To call Congress, or either 
of the Houses, in extraordinary 
session, whenever in his judgment 
it may be advisable. 

XII. [Identical] 



XIII. [Identical] 



XIV. To grant, according to 
law, pardons to criminals sen- 
tenced for offenses within the 
jurisdiction of the Federal tri- 
bunals, and to all persons sen- 
tenced for offenses of the common 
order in the Federal District and 
Territories. 

XV. [Identical] 



Art. 86. For the transaction 
of administrative matters of the 



XVI. Whenever the Senate shall 
not be in session the President 
may temporarily make the nomi- 
nations enumerated in Clauses III 
and IV hereof, but these nomina- 
tions shall be submitted to the 
Senate so soon as it reconvenes. 

XVII. To exercise such other 
rights and duties as are expressly 
conferred upon him by this Con- 
stitution. 

Art. 90. [Identical] 



Constitution of Mexico 



71 



1857 
Federal Government there shall 
be the number of Secretaries of 
Executive Departments which 
the Congress may by law estab- 
lish, which law shall likewise 
assign among the various de- 
partments the several matters 
with which each shall be charged. 

Art. 87. No person shall be 
appointed secretary of an ex- 
ecutive department who is not 
a Mexican citizen by birth, in 
the enjoyment of his rights, and 
twenty-five years old. 



Art. 88. All regulations, de- 
crees, and orders of the President 
shall be signed by the secretary 
of the executive department to 
which the matter pertains. They 
shall not be binding without this 
requisite. 



1917 



Art. 89. The Secretaries of 
Executive Departments shall, 
so soon as the sessions of the 
first period are opened, report 
to the Congress as to the state 
of their respective departments. 



Art. 91. No person shall be 
appointed Secretary of an Ex- 
ecutive Department who is not a 
Mexican citizen by birth, in 
the enjoyment of his rights and 
who has not attained the age 
of thirty years. 

Art. 92. All regulations, 
decrees and orders of the Presi- 
dent shall be signed by the 
Secretary of the Executive De- 
partment to which the matter 
pertains. They shall not be 
binding without this requisite. 
All regulations, decrees, and orders 
of the President touching the 
government of the Federal Dis- 
trict and the administrative de- 
partments shall be transmitted 
directly by the President to the 
Governor of the District and to 
the chief of the respective de- 
partment. 

Art. 93. The Secretaries of 
Executive Departments shall on 
the opening of each regular ses- 
sion report to the Congress as 
to the state of their respective 
Departments. Either House may 
summon a Secretary of an Ex- 
ecutive Department to inform it, 
whenever a bill or other matter 
pertaining to his department is 
under discussion or consideration. 



72 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



1917 



SECTION III 

Of the Judicial Power 

Art. 90. The judicial power 
of the Federation is vested in a 
supreme court and in the dis- 
trict and circuit courts. 

Art. 91. The supreme court 
shall consist of fifteen justices, 
and shall sit in banc or in sec- 
tions, as provided by law. [As 
amended, May 22, 1900.] 

Art. 92. The justices of the 
supreme court shall serve for six 
years, and their election shall be 
indirect in the first degree, in 
the manner established by the 
electoral law. 



Art. 93. No person shall be 
eligible to the position of justice 
of the supreme court who, in the 
judgment of the electors, is not 



CHAPTER IV 

Of the Judicial Power 

Art. 94. The judicial power 
of the Federation is vested in a 
Supreme Court and in Circuit 
and District Courts, whose num- 
ber and powers shall be fixed by 
law. The Supreme Court of 
Justice shall consist of eleven 
members; its sittings shall be in 
banc and its hearings shall be 
piiblic, except in the cases where 
public interest or morality shall 
otherwise require. It shall meet 
at such times and under such 
conditions as by law prescribed. 
No sittings of the court shall be 
held without the attendance of at 
least two-thirds of its total mem- 
bership, and all decisions ren- 
dered shall be by a majority vote. 

The Justices of the Supreme 
Court chosen to this office in the 
forthcoming elections shall serve 
two years; those elected at the 
conclusion of this first term shall 
serve four years, and from and 
after the year 1923 the Justices of 
the Supreme Court, the Circuit 
and District judges may only be 
removed for malfeasance and after 
impeachment proceedings, unless 
the Circuit and, District Judges be 
promoted to the next higher grade. 

The same provision shall gov- 
ern, in so far as it be applicable 
to the terms of two and four years, 
respectively, to which this article 
refers. 

Art. 95. The Justices of the 
Supreme Court shall have the 
following qualifications: 

I. They shall be Mexican 



Constitution of Mexico 



73 



1857 
learned in the science of law, 
thirty-five years of age, and a 
Mexican citizen by birth, in the 
exercise of his rights. 



1917 
citizens by birth, in the full 
enjoyment of their civil and po~ 
litical rights. 

II. They shall be over thirty- 
five years of age at the time of 
election. 

III. They shall be graduates 
in law of some institution or cor- 
poration authorized by law to 
confer such degrees. 

IV. They shall be of good 
repute and not have been convicted 
of any offense punishable with 
more than one year's imprison- 
ment; but conviction of larceny, 
deceit, forgery, embezzlement or 
any other offense seriously im- 
pairing their good name in the 
public mind shall disqualify them 
for office, whatever may have been 
the penalty imposed. 

\. They shall have resided in 
the country for the last five years, 
except in the case of absence due to 
public service abroad for a period 
not exceeding six months. 

Art. 96. The members of the 
Supreme Court of Justice shall be 
chosen by the Congress, acting as 
an electoral college; the presence 
of at least two-thirds of the total 
number of Representatives and 
Senators shall be necessary for 
such action. The election shall be 
by secret ballot and by a majority 
vote, and shall be held as among 
the candidates previously pro- 
posed, one being nominated by 
each State legislature, as provided 
in the respective State laws. 

Should no candidate receive a 
majority on the first ballot, the 
balloting shall be repeated between 
the two candidates receiving the 
highest number of votes. 



74 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
Art. 94. The justices of the 
supreme court shall, on enter- 
ing upon the exercise of their 
functions, take an oath before 
Congress, and, in its recesses, 
before the permanent commit- 
tee, in the following form: "Do 
you swear to perform loyally 
and patriotically the office of 
justice of the supreme court of 
justice, to which you have been 
chosen by the people, in con- 
formity with the Constitution, 
having ever in mind the welfare 
and prosperity of the Union?" 

Art. 95. The resignation of a 
justice of the supreme court 
shall only be accepted for grave 
cause, approved by the Con- 
gress, to whom the resignation 
shall be tendered. In the re- 
cesses of the Congress the power 
to act on this matter belongs to 
the Permanent Committee. 

Art. 96. The law shall estab- 
lish and organize the circuit and 
district courts, and the office of 
the Public Attorney of the Fed- 
eration. The officers of the 
Public Attorney and the Attor- 
ney General of the Republic who 
shall preside over the same shall 
be appointed by the Executive. 
[As amended May 22, 1900.] 



1917 
[Compare the last two para- 
graphs of Art. 97 of 1917.J 



[Identical with Art. 99 of 
1917] 



Art. 97. All Circuit and Dis- 
trict Judges shall be appointed 
by the Supreme Court of Jus- 
tice; they shall have such quali- 
fications as by law required, 
shall serve four years and shall 
not be removed except by im- 
peachment proceedings or for 
incapacity to discharge their 
duties, in accordance with the 
law. 

The Supreme Court of Justice 
may remove the District Judges 
from one District to another, or 
it may fix their seats in another 
locality, as it may deem most 
advantageous to the public busi- 
ness. A similar procedure shall 



Constitution of Mexico 75 

1867 1917 

be observed in the case of Cir- 
cuit Judges. 

The Supreme Court of Justice 
may likewise appoint auxiliary 
Circuit and District Judges to 
assist in the labors of such courts 
as have an excessive amount of 
business, in order that the ad- 
ministration of justice may be 
speedy; it shall also name one 
or more of its members or some 
district or circuit judge or shall 
designate one or more special 
commissioners, whenever it shall 
deem it advisable or on the 
request of the President or of 
either House or of any State 
Governor, solely for the purpose 
of inquiring into the behavior of 
any judge or federal justice or 
into any fact or facts which 
amount to a violation of any 
individual rights or to the sub- 
version of the popular will or 
any other offense punishable by 
Federal statute. 

The Circuit and District 
Courts shall be assigned among 
the several Justices of the Su- 
preme Court who shall visit 
them periodically, shall observe 
the conduct of their judges, 
listen to any complaint pre- 
sented against them and per- 
form all such other acts as the 
law may require. The Supreme 
Court shall appoint and remove 
at will its clerk of the court 
and other employees on the 
roster established by law. The 
Circuit and District Judges shall 
likewise appoint and remove at 
will their respective clerks and 
employees. 

The Supreme Court shall 
choose each year one of its mem- 



76 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

bers to act as Chief Justice, with 
the right of re-election. 

Each Justice of the Supreme 
Court on assuming office shall 
make an affirmation before Con- 
gress, or if this is in recess, 
before the Permanent Com- 
mittee, as follows: 

The Presiding Officer shall 
say: "Do you promise to per- 
form faithfully and conscien- 
tiously the duties of Justice of 
the Supreme Court with which 
you have been charged, and to 
defend and enforce the Consti- 
tution of the United States of 
Mexico and the laws arising 
thereunder, having ever in mind 
the welfare and prosperity of 
the Nation?" To which the 
Justice shall reply, "I do." On 
which the Presiding Officer shall 
answer: "If you fail to do so, 
may the Nation call you to 
account." 

The Circuit and District 
Judges shall make the affirma- 
tion of office before the Supreme 
Court or before such other 
authority as the law may deter- 
mine. 

Art. 98. No temporary dis- 
ability of a Justice of the Supreme 
Court not exceeding one month 
shall be filled, provided there be 
otherwise a quorum. In the 
absence of a quorum the Congress, 
or in its recess the Permanent 
Committee, shall name a sub- 
stitute selected from among the 
candidates submitted by the States 
for the election of the justice in 
question and not chosen, to serve 
during such disability. If the dis- 
ability does not exceed two months, 



Constitution of Mexico 77 

1857 1917 

the Congress, or during its recess 
the Permanent Committee, shall 
choose at will a temporary jus- 
tice. 

In the event of the death, resig- 
nation or disqualification of any 
justice of the supreme court, a 
new election shall be held by the 
Congress to fill this vacancy as 
provided in Article 96. 

If the Congress shall not be 
in session, the Permanent Com- 
mittee shall make a temporary 
appointment until such time as 
the Congress shall convene and 
proceed to the corresponding elec- 
tion. 

Art. 99. [Identical with Art. 
95 of 1857.] 

Art. 100. The Supreme Court 
shall grant all leaves of absence of 
its members, when they do not 
exceed one month; such as do 
exceed this period shall be granted 
by the House of Representatives, 
or during its recess by the Per- 
manent Committee. 

Art. 101. No justice of the 
supreme court, circuit or dis- 
trict judge, nor clerk of any of 
these courts shall under any cir- 
cumstances accept any State, Fed- 
eral or private commission or 
office, excepting honorary titles 
from scientific, literary or chari- 
table associations. The violation 
of this provision shall work a for- 
feiture of office. 

Art. 102. The office of the 
Public Attorney shall be organ- 
ized in accordance with the law, 
and its officers shall be ap- 
pointed and removed at will by 



78 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

the Executive. They shall be 
under the direction of an Attorney 
General who shall possess the same 
qualifications as are required for 
the office of Justice of the Supreme 
Court. 

The Public Attorneys shall be 
charged with the judicial prosecu- 
tion of all Federal offenses; they 
shall accordingly sue out all 
orders of arrest, assemble and 
offer all evidence as. to the respon- 
sibility of the accused, see that the 
trials are conducted in due order 
so that the administration of jus- 
tice may be speedy, pray the 
imposition of sentence, and in 
general take part in all matters 
required by law. 

The Attorney General of the 
Republic shall personally inter- 
vene in matters to which the Fed- 
eral Government is a party, in 
cases affecting ministers, diplo- 
matic agents and consuls general, 
and in all controversies between 
two or more States of the Union, 
between the Federal Government 
and a State or between the several 
powers of a State. The Attorney 
General may either personally or 
through one of the Public Attor- 
neys take part in all other cases in 
which the Public Attorneys are 
called upon to act. 

The Attorney General shall be 
the legal advisor of the Govern- 
ment, and both he and the Public 
Attorneys under his orders shall 
faithfully obey the law and shall 
be liable for all breaches or for 
any violations which they may 
incur in the discharge of their 
duties. 

Art. 103. (Identical with Art. 
ioi of 1857.] 



Constitution of Mexico 



79 



1857 
Art. 97. The Federal tri- 
bunals shall take cognizance of: 

I. All controversies arising out 
of the application and enforce- 
ment of the federal laws, except- 
ing when the application only- 
affects private rights, when the 
regular local courts of the States, 
The Federal District and Terri- 
tory of Lower California shall 
assume jurisdiction, respectively. 
[.4s amended May 29, 1884.] 



II. All cases pertaining to 
admiralty law. 

III. All cases to which the 
Federation may be a party. 

IV. All cases which may arise 
between two or more States. 

V. All cases arising between 
a State and one or more citizens 
of another State. 

VI. All civil or criminal cases 
that may arise out of treaties 
with foreign powers. 

VII. All cases concerning dip- 
lomatic agents and consuls. 

Art. 98. The supreme court 
shall have original jurisdiction 
of controversies which may arise 
between one State and another, 
and of those to which the Fed- 
eral Government may be a 
party. 



1917 
Art. 104. The Federal Tri- 
bunals shall have jurisdiction 
over: 

I. All controversies of a civil 
or criminal nature arising out of 
the application and enforcement 
of the Federal laws, or out of 
treaties concluded with foreign 
powers. Whenever such con- 
troversies affect only private 
rights, the regular local courts 
of the States, the Federal Dis- 
trict and Territories shall, at the 
election of the plaintiff, assume 
jurisdiction. Appeal may be had 
from all judgments of first instance 
to the next higher tribunal of the 
same court in which the case was 
first heard. Appeal may be taken 
from sentences of second instance 
to the Supreme Court of Justice, 
which appeal shall be prepared, 
submitted and prosecuted, in ac- 
cordance with the procedure pro- 
vided by law. 

II. [Identical] 

III. [Identical] 

IV. All cases arising between 
two or more States, or between 
any State and the Federal Govern- 
ment, as well as those arising be- 
tween the courts of the Federal 
District and those of the Federal 
Government or of a State. 

V. [Identical] 

VI. [Identical with VII.] 

Art. 105. The Supreme Court 
of Justice shall have exclu- 
sive jurisdiction in all contro- 
versies arising between two 
or more States, between the 
powers of government of any 
State as to the constitutionality of 
their acts, or between one or more 



80 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



Art. 99. The supreme court 
shall also have power to settle 
questions of jurisdiction be- 
tween Federal tribunals, be- 
tween these tribunals, and those 
of the States, or between those 
of one State and those of an- 
other. 

Art. 100. In all the other 
cases mentioned in Article 97, 
the supreme court shall be 
either a court of appeals, or a 
court of last resort, as may be 
defined by the law regulating 
the jurisdiction of the circuit 
and district courts. 

Art. 101. The Federal tri- 
bunals shall take cognizance of : 

I. All controversies arising out 
of laws or acts of the authorities 
which shall infringe any personal 
guarantees. 

II. All controversies arising 
out of laws or acts of the fed- 
eral authorities which limit or 
encroach upon the sovereignty 
of the States. 

III. All controversies arising 
out of laws or acts of the State 
authorities which invade the 
sphere of the Federal authorities. 

Art. 102. All controversies 
mentioned in Article 103 shall be 
prosecuted by the injured party 
in accordance with the judicial 
forms and procedure which the 
law shall establish. 

The judgment shall always be 
so drawn as to affect exclusively 



1917 
States and the Federal Govern- 
ment, and in all cases to which 
the Federal Government may 
be a party. 

Art. 106. The Supreme Court 
of Justice shall likewise have ex- 
clusive jurisdiction to determine 
all questions of jurisdiction be- 
tween the Federal tribunals, 
between these and those of the 
States, or between those of one 
State and those of another. 



[Identical with Art. 103 of 
1017.] 



Art. 107. All controversies 
mentioned in Article 103 shall 
be prosecuted by the injured 
party in accordance with the 
judicial forms and procedure 
which the law shall establish, 
subject to the following condi- 
tions : 



Constitution of Mexico 



81 



1857 
private individuals, and shall 
confine itself to affording them 
redress in the special case to 
which the complaint refers; but 
it shall make no general state- 
ment as to the law or the act 
that may have formed the basis 
for the complaint. When the 
controversy arises through the 
violation of personal guarantees 
in a civil suit, recourse may 
be had to the Federal Courts, 
only after the said civil suit has 
duly terminated with a decision 
which will permit no further 
legal recourse operating to va- 
cate the said decision. [As 
amended November 12, 1908.] 



1917 

I. The judgment shall always 
be so drawn as to affect exclu- 
sively private individuals, and 
shall confine itself to affording 
them redress in the special 
case to which the complaint 
refers; but it shall make no 
general statement as to the law 
or the act that may have formed 
the basis for the complaint. 

II. In civil or penal suits, except- 
ing those mentioned in Clause IX 
hereof, the writ of "amparo" shall, 
issue only against final judgments 
when no other ordinary recourse is 
available by which these judgments 
may be modified or amended, if 
the violation of the law shall have 
occurred in the judgment, or if, 
although committed during the 
course of the trial, objection was 
duly noted and protest entered 
against the denial of reparation, 
and provided further that if com- 
mitted in first instance it shall 
have been invoked in second in- 
stance as a violation of the law. 



Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

Notwithstanding the foregoing 
provision, the supreme court may 
in -penal cases waive any defects 
in the petition when there has 
been a manifest violation of the 
law which has left the petitioner 
without recourse, or when he has 
been tried by a law not strictly 
applicable to the case, provided 
failure to take advantage of this 
violation has been merely an 
oversight. 

III. In civil or penal suits the 
writ of "amparo" shall issue 
only if substantial portions of 
the rules of procedure have been 
violated, and provided further 
that the said violation shall deprive 
the petitioner of means of defense. 

IV. In addition to the case 
mentioned in the foregoing para- 
graph, the writ of "amparo" shall 
issue only on a final judgment in 
a civil suit, — provided the require- 
ments set forth in Clause II 
hereof have been complied with, 
— when the judgment shall be 
contrary to the letter of the law 
applicable to the case or contrary 
to its legal interpretation, when 
it includes persons, actions, de- 
fenses, or things which have not 
been the object of the suit, or 
finally when all these have not 
been included either through omis- 
sion or express refusal, 

When the writ of "amparo" is 
sought against mesne judgments, 
in accordance with the provisions 
of the foregoing clause, these rules 
shall be observed, as far as applic- 
able. 

V. In penal suits, the author- 
ities responsible for the violation 
shall stay the execution of final 
judgment against which the writ 



Constitution of Mexico 83 

1857 1917 

of "amparo" has been sought; 
for this purpose the petitioner 
shall, within the period set by 
law, give notice, under oath, to 
the said authorities of the inter- 
position of this recourse, accom- 
panying it with two copies of the 
petition, one of which shall be 
delivered to the opposing party 
and the other filed. 

VI. The execution of a final 
judgment in civil suits shall only 
be stayed when the petitioner shall 
give bond to cover damages occa- 
sioned thereby, unless the other 
party shall give a counter bond 
(1) to guarantee that the normal 
conditions and relations previ- 
ously existing be restored, and (#) 
to pay the corresponding damages, 
in the event of the granting of the 
"amparo." In such event the 
interposition of the recourse of 
"amparo" shall be communicated 
as provided in the foregoing 
clause. 

VII. If a writ of "amparo" be 
sought against a final judgment, a 
certified copy of such portions of 
the record as the petitioner may 
desire shall be requested from the 
authority responsible for the vio- 
lation; to this there shall be added 
such portions as the other party 
may desire and a clear and suc- 
cinct statement by the said au- 
thority of the justification of the 
act protested; note shall be made 
of this on the record. 

VIII. When a writ of "amparo" 
is sought against a final judg- 
ment, the petition shall be brought 
before the Supreme Court; this 
petition, together with the copy 
required by Clause VII, shall be 
either presented to the Supreme 



84 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

Court or sent through the au- 
thority responsible for the viola- 
tion or through the District Court 
of the corresponding State. The 
Supreme Court shall render judg- 
ment without any other formality 
or procedure than the petition, 
the document presented by the 
other party and that of the Attor- 
ney General or the Public Attorney 
he may name in his stead, and 
shall comprise no other legal 
question than that contained in 
the complaint. 

IX. When the acts of an au- 
thority other than the judicial are 
involved or the acts of the judiciary 
exercised outside of the suit or 
after the termination thereof, or 
acts committed during the suit 
whose execution is of impossible 
reparation, or which affect per- 
sons not parties to the suit, the 
writ of "amparo" shall be sought 
before the District Court within 
whose jurisdiction is located the 
place where the act protested was 
committed or attempted; the pro- 
cedure in this case shall be con- 
fined to the report of the authority 
and to a hearing, the call for 
which shall be issued in the same 
order of the court as that calling 
for the report. This hearing shall 
be held at as early a date as possi- 
ble, the testimony of both parties 
offered, arguments heard which 
shall not exceed one hour for each 
side, and finally the judgment 
which shall be pronounced at the 
same hearing. The judgment of 
the District Court shall be final, 
if the interested parties do not 
appeal to the Supreme Court 
within the period set by law and 



Constitution of Mexico 85 

1857 1917 

in the manner prescribed by 
Clause VIII. 

In case of a violation of the 
guarantees of Articles 16, 19 and 
20, recourse shall be had through 
the appellate court of the court 
committing the breach or to the 
corresponding District Court. An 
appeal against the decision of any 
of these courts may be taken to 
the Supreme Court. 

If the district judge shall not 
reside in the same locality as the 
official guilty of the violation, 
the, judge before whom the peti- 
tion of "amparo" shall be sub- 
mitted shall be determined by 
law; this judge shall be author- 
ized to suspend temporarily the 
execution of the act protested, 
in accordance with the terms 
established by law. 

X. Any official failing to sus- 
pend the execution of the act 
protested, when in duty bound to 
do so, or when he admits an insuf- 
ficient or improper bond, shall be 
turned over to the proper authori- 
ties; the civil and penal liablity 
of the official shall in these cases 
be a joint liability with the person 
offering the bond and his surety. 

XL // after the granting of an 
"amparo," the guilty official shall 
persist in the act or acts against 
which the petition of "amparo" 
was filed, or shall seek to render 
of no effect the judgment of the 
Federal authority, he shall be 
forthwith removed from office and 
turned over for trial to the corre- 
sponding district court. 

XII. Wardens and jailers who 
fail to receive a duly certified copy 
of the formal order of commit- 
ment within the seventy-two hours 



86 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



1917 

granted by Article 19, reckoned 
from the time the accused is placed 
at the disposal of the court, shall 
bring this fact to the attention of 
the court, immediately upon ex- 
piration of this period; and if the 
proper order be not received within 
the next three hours the accused 
shall be set at liberty. 

Any official who shall violate 
this provision and the article 
referred to in the foregoing para- 
graph shall be immediately turned 
over to the proper authorities. 
Any official or agent thereof who, 
after an arrest has been made, 
shall fail to place the accused at 
the disposition of the court within 
the next twenty-four hours shall 
himself be turned over to the 
proper authority. 

If the detention be effected out- 
side the locality in which the 
court is situated, there -shall be 
added to the period mentioned in 
the preceding sentence the time 
necessary to travel from the said 
locality to that where the detention 
took place. 



TITLE IV 

Of the Responsibility of 
Officials 

Art. 103. Senators, represent- 
atives, justices of the supreme 
court, and secretaries of execu- 
tive departments shall be liable 
for the common offenses commit- 
ted by them during their term of 
office, and for their crimes, mis- 
demeanors, or omissions in the 
exercise of their functions. The 
governors of the States shall 
also be responsible for the viola- 
tion of the Federal Constitu- 



TITLE IV 

Of the Responsibility of 
Officials 

Art. 108. Senators and Repre- 
sentatives of Congress, Justices 
of the Supreme Court, Secre- 
taries of Executive Departments 
and the Attorney General of the 
Republic shall be liable for all 
common offenses committed dur- 
ing their term of office, as well as 
for all official offenses or acts of 
commission or omission in which 
they may incur in the discharge 
of their duties. 



Constitution of Mexico 



87 



1857 
tion and laws. The President 
of the Republic shall be like- 
wise responsible; but during his 
term he can be charged only 
with treason express violation 
of the Constitution, attacks on 
electoral liberty, and grave com- 
mon offenses. [A s amended May 
6, 1904.} 

No constitutional privilege 
shall be extended to any high 
Federal functionary when tried 
for official offenses, misdemean- 
ors, or omissions committed by 
him in the discharge of any 
public function or commission, 
during the time in which, accord- 
ing to law, the privilege is en- 
joyed. This provision shall be 
applicable to cases of common 
offenses committed under the 
same circumstances. In order 
that the proceedings may be 
instituted when the functionary 
returns to the exercise of his 
own functions, the rules set forth 
in Article 104 of the Constitu- 
tion shall be observed. 

Art. 104. If the offense belongs 
to the common order the House 
of Representatives, acting as a 
grand jury, shall determine by 
a majority vote whether there 
is or is not any ground for pro- 
ceeding against the accused. 

If the finding be favorable to 
the accused, no further action 
shall be taken. 

If the finding be adverse, the 
accused shall ipso facto be re- 
moved from office and be placed 
at the disposition of the ordi- 
nary courts of justice. [As 
amended November 18, 1874-] 



1917 

Governors of States and mem- 
bers of State Legislatures shall be 
liable for violation of the Consti- 
tution and the Federal Laws. 

The President of the Republic 
may only be impeached during 
his term of office for high treason 
and common offenses of a serious 
character. 

[Identical with Art. no of 
1017.] 



Art. 109. If the offense be- 
longs to the common order the 
House of Representatives, acting 
as a grand jury, shall determine 
by a majority vote of its total 
membership whether there is or 
is not any ground for proceeding 
against the accused. 

If the finding be favorable to 
the accused, no further action 
shall be taken; but such finding 
shall not be a bar to the prosecu- 
tion of the charge so soon as the 
constitutional privilege shall cease, 
since the finding of the House does 
not in any way determine the 
merits of the charge. 



88 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



Art. 105. In cases of impeach- 
ment the House of Representa- 
tives shall act as a grand jury 
and the Senate as a tribunal. 

The grand jury shall decide by 
a majority vote if the accused 
is or is not to be impeached. 
If the decision is favorable to the 
accused official, the latter shall 
continue in the exercise of his 
functions. If it is adverse, the 
accused official shall be immedi- 
ately removed from office and 
put at the disposal of the Senate. 
The Senate, acting as a tribunal, 
shall, upon the proper hearing of 
the defendant, and also of the 
plaintiff, if there be any, by a 
majority vote impose the penalty 
provided by law. [As amended 
November IS, 1874.} 



1917 
If the finding be adverse, the 
accused shall ipso facto be re- 
moved from office and be placed 
at the disposition of the ordinary 
courts of justice, except in the 
case of the President of the Repub- 
lic, who may only be impeached 
before the Senate, as in the case 
of an official offense. 

Art. 111. The Senate acting 
as a grand jury shall try all cases 
of impeachment ; but it may not 
institute such proceedings with- 
outaprevious accusation brought 
by the House of Representatives. 

If the Senate should, after 
hearing the accused and con- 
ducting such proceedings as it 
may deem advisable, determine 
by a majority vote of two- 
thirds of its total membership 
that the accused is guilty, the 
latter shall be forthwith re- 
moved from office by virtue of 
such decision, or be disqualified 
from holding any other office for 
such time as the law may deter- 
mine. 

When the same offense is pun- 
ishable with an additional pen- 
alty, the accused shall be placed 
at the disposition of the regular 
authorities who shall judge and 
sentence him in accordance with 
the law. 

In all cases embraced by this 
article and in those included by 
the preceding both the decisions 
of the Grand Jury and the find- 
ings of the House of Represen- 
tatives shall be final. 

Any person shall have the 
right to denounce before the 
House of Representatives of- 
fenses of a common order or of 



Constitution of Mexico 



89 



1857 



Art. 106. No pardon shall be 
granted the offender in cases of 
impeachment. 

Art. 107. The responsibility 
for official breaches and offenses 
may only be enforced during 
such time as the functionary 
shall remain in office and for one 
year thereafter. 

Art. 108. In civil cases no 
privilege or immunity in favor 
of any public functionary shall 
be recognized. 

title v 

Of the States of the Federation 

Art. 109. The States shall 
adopt for their internal govern- 
ment the popular, representa- 



1917 
an official character committed 
by high Federal functionaries; 
and whenever the said House of 
Representatives shall determine 
that there exist good grounds 
for impeachment proceedings 
before the Senate, it shall name 
a committee from among its 
own members to sustain the 
charges brought. 

The Congress shall as soon 
as possible enact a law as to 
the responsibility of all Federal 
officials and employees which 
shall fix as official offenses all 
acts, of commission or omission, 
which may prejudice the public 
interest and efficient administra- 
tion, even though such acts may 
not heretofore have been con- 
sidered offenses. These officials 
shall be tried by a jury in the 
same manner as provided for 
trials by jury in Article 20. 

Art. 112. [Identical] 



Art. 113. [Identical] 



Art. 114. [Identical] 



TITLE V 

Of the States of the Federation 

Art. 115. The States shall 
adopt for their internal govern- 
ment the popular, representa- 



90 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
tive, republican form of govern- 
ment. The term of office in the 
case of Governors shall not 
exceed six years. The prohibi- 
tions on the President, Vice 
President and President ad in- 
terim, referred to in Article 78, 
shall be applicable to State Gov- 
ernors and functionaries acting 
in their stead. [As amended No- 
vember 27, 1911.] 



1917 

tive, republican form of govern- 
ment; they shall have as the basis 
of their territorial division and 
political and administrative organ- 
ization the free municipality, in 
accordance with the following pro- 
visions: 

I. Each municipality shall be 
administered by a town council 
chosen by direct vote of the people, 
and no authority shall intervene 
between the municipality and the 
State Government. 

II. The municipalities shall 
freely administer their own reven- 
ues which shall be derived from 
the taxes fixed by the State Legis- 
latures which shall at all times be 
sufficient to meet their needs. 

III. The municipalities shall 
be regarded as enjoying corporate 
existence for all legal purposes. 

The Federal Executive and the 
State Governors shall have com- 
mand over all public forces of the 
municipalities wherein they may 
permanently or temporarily re- 
side. 

Constitutional State Gover- 
nors shall not be re-elected, nor 
shall their term of office exceed 
four years. 

The prohibitions of Article 83 
are applicable to substitute or ad 
interim governors. 

The number of Representatives 
in the State Legislatures shall be 
in proportion to the inhabitants of 
each State, but in no case shall the 
number of representatives in any 
State Legislature be less than 
fifteen. 

Each electoral district of the 
States shall choose a Representa-r 



Constitution of Mexico 



91 



1857 



Art. 110. The States shall 
have the power to fix among 
themselves, by friendly agree- 
ments, their respective bound- 
aries; but these agreements shall 
not be carried into effect without 
the approval of the Congress. 

Art. 111. No State shall— 

I. Enter into alliances, treat- 
ies or coalitions with another 
State or with foreign powers. 
Coalitions between frontier 
States for offensive or defensive 
war against savage Indians are 
excepted. 

II. Grant letters of marque or 
reprisal. 

III. Coin money, issue paper 
money, stamps or stamped paper. 
[As amended May 1, 1896.] 

IV. Levy taxes on persons or 
property passing through its 
territory. [As amended May 1, 
1896.] 

V. Prohibit or tax, directly 
or indirectly, the entry into its 
territory, or the withdrawal 
therefrom, of any merchandise, 
foreign or domestic. [As amend- 
ed May 1, 1896.] 

VI. Burden the circulation or 
consumption of domestic or for- 
eign merchandise with taxes or 
duties to be collected by local 
custom houses or subject to 
inspection the said merchandise 
or require it to be accompanied 



1917 
live and an alternate to the State 
Legislature. 

Every State Governor shall be a 
Mexican citizen by birth and a 
native thereof, or resident therein 
not less than five years immedi- 
ately prior to the day of election. 

Art. 116. [Identical] 



Art. 117. 

I. Enter into alliances, treat- 
ies or coalitions with another 
State or with foreign powers. 



II. [Identical] 

III. [Identical] 



IV. [Identical] 

V. [Identical] 



VI. [Identical] 



92 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
by documents. [As amended 
May 1, 1896.} 

VII. Enact or maintain in 
force- laws or fiscal regulations 
discriminating, by taxation or 
otherwise, between merchandise, 
foreign or domestic, on account 
of its origin, whether this dis- 
crimination be established with 
regard to similar local products 
or to similar products of foreign 
origin. [As amended May 1, 
1896.] 

VIII. Issue bonds of the pub- 
lic debt payable in foreign coin 
or outside the Federal terri- 
tory contract loans, directly or 
indirectly, with any foreign gov- 
ernment, or assume any obliga- 
tion in favor of any foreign cor- 
poration or individual, requiring 
the issuance of certificates or 
bonds payable to bearer or ne- 
gotiable by endorsement. [As 
amended December 18, 1901.} 



Art. 112. No State shall, 
without the consent of the Con- 
gress: 

I. Establish tonnage dues or 
other port charges, or impose 
taxes or other duties upon im- 
ports or exports. 

II. Keep at any time per- 
manent troops or vessels of war. 

III. Make war on its own 
behalf on any foreign power, 
except in cases of invasion or of 
such imminent peril as to admit 
of no delay. In such event the 
State shall give notice immedi- 
ately to the President of the 
Republic. 



1917 



VII. [Identical] 



VIII. Issue bonds of the pub- 
lic debt payable in foreign coin 
or outside the Federal terri- 
tory; contract loans, directly or 
indirectly, with any foreign gov- 
ernment, or assume any obliga- 
tion in favor of any foreign cor- 
poration or individual, requiring 
the issuance of certificates or 
bonds payable to bearer or ne- 
gotiable by endorsement. 

The Federal Congress and the 
State Legislatures shall forthwith 
enact laws against alcoholism. 

Art. 118. [Identical, except 
that heading III is omitted.] 



Constitution of Mexico 



93 



1857 
Art. 1 13. Every State shall be 
bound to deliver without delay 
to the demanding authorities 
the fugitives from justice from 
other States or from foreign 
nations. 



Art. 114. The State Gover- 
nors are bound to publish and 
enforce the Federal laws. 

Art. 115. Full faith and cre- 
dit shall be given in each State 
of the Federation to the public 
acts, records and judicial pro- 
ceedings of all the other States. 
The Congress shall by general 
laws prescribe the manner of 
proving the said acts, records 
and proceedings and the effect 
thereof. 



1917 

Art. 119. Every state shall be 
bound to deliver without delay 
to the demanding authorities 
the fugitives from justice from 
other States or from foreign 
nations. 

In such cases the writ of the 
court granting the extradition 
shall operate as a sufficient war- 
rant for the detention of the 
accused for one month, in the 
case of extradition from one State 
to another, and for two months in 
the case of international extradi- 
tion. 

Art. 120. [Identical] 



Art. 121. Full faith and cre- 
dit shall be given in each State 
of the Federation to the public 
acts, records and judicial pro- 
ceedings of all the other States. 
The Congress shall by general 
laws prescribe the manner of 
proving the said acts, records 
and proceedings and the effect 
thereof. 

I. The laws of a State shall 
only be binding within its own 
confines, and shall therefore have 
no extra-territorial force. 

II. Movable and immovable 
property shall be governed by the 
lex sitae. 

III. Judgments of a State court 
as to property and property rights 
situated in another State shall only 
be binding when expressly so pro- 
vided by the law of the latter State. 

Judgments relating to personal 
rights shall only be binding in 
another State provided the person 
shall have expressly, or impliedly 



94 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



Art. 116. The Powers of the 
Union are bound to protect the 
States against all invasion or 
external violence. In case of 
insurrection or internal disturb- 
ance they shall give them the 
same protection, provided the 
Legislature of the State, or the 
Executive thereof if the Legis- 
lature is not in session, shall so 
request. 



1917 
by reason of. domicile, submitted 
to the jurisdiction of the court 
rendering such judgment, and 
provided further that personal 
service shall have been secured. 

IV. All acts of civil status per- 
formed in accordance with the 
laws of one State shall be binding 
in all other States. 

V. All professional licenses is- 
sued by the authorities of one 
State in accordance with its laws 
shall be valid in all other States. 

Art. 122. [Identical] 



TITLE VI 

Of Labor and Social Welfare 

Art. 123. The Congress and 
the State Legislatures shall make 
laws relative to labor with due 
regard for the needs of each 
region of the Republic, and in 
conformity with the following prin- 
ciples, and these principles and 
laws shall govern the labor of skilled 
and unskilled workmen, employees, 
domestic servants and artisans, and 
in general every contract of labor. 

I. Eight hours shall be the 
maximum limit of a day's work. 

II. The maximum limit of 
night work shall be seven hours. 
Unhealthy and dangerous occu- 
pations are forbidden to all 



Constitution of Mexico 95 

1867 1917 

women and to children under 
sixteen years of age. Night work 
in factories is likewise forbidden 
to women and to children under 
sixteen years of age; nor shall 
they be employed in commercial 
establishments after ten o'clock 
at night. 

III. The maximum limit of a 
day's work for children over 
twelve and under sixteen years of 
age shall be six hours. The work 
of children under twelve years of 
age shall not be made the subject 
of a contract. 

IV. Every workman shall enjoy 
at least one day's rest for every six 
days' work. 

V. Women shall not perform 
any physical work requiring con- 
siderable physical effort during 
the three months immediately pre- 
ceding parturition; during the 
month following parturition they 
shall necessarily enjoy a period 
of rest and shall receive their 
salaries or wages in full and retain 
their employment and the rights 
they may have acquired under 
their contracts. During the peri- 
od of lactation they shall enjoy 
two extraordinary daily periods 
of rest of one-half hour each, in 
order to nurse their children. 

VI. The minimum wage to be 
received by a workman shall be 
that considered sufficient, accord- 
ing to the conditions prevailing in 
the respective region of the coun- 
try, to satisfy the normal needs of 
the life of the workman, his educa- 
tion and his lawful pleasures, 
considering him as the head of a 
family. In all agricultural, com- 
mercial, manufacturing or mining 



96 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

enterprises the workmen shall have 
the right to participate in the profits 
in the manner fixed in Clause IX 
of this article. 

VII. The same compensation 
shall be paid for the same work, 
without regard to sex or national- 
ity. 

VIII. The minimum wage shall 
be exempt from attachment, set- 
off or discount. 

IX. The determination of the 
minimum wage and of the rate of 
profit-sharing described in Clause 
VI shall be made by special com- 
missions to be appointed in each 
municipality and to be subor- 
dinated to the Central Board of 
Conciliation to be established in 
each State. 

X. All wages shall be paid in 
legal currency and shall not be 
paid in merchandise, orders, count- 
ers or any other representative token 
with which it is sought to substitute 
money. 

XL When owing to special cir- 
cumstances it becomes necessary 
to increase the working hours, 
there shall be paid as wages for the 
overtime one hundred per cent 
more than those fixed for regular 
time. In no case shall the over- 
time exceed three hours nor con- 
tinue for more than three consecu- 
tive days; and no women of what- 
ever age nor boys under sixteen 
years of age may engage in over- 
time work. 

XII. In every agricultural, in- 
dustrial, mining or other class of 
work employers are bound to fur- 
nish their workmen comfortable 
and sanitary dwelling-places, for 
which they may charge rents not 



Constitution of Mexico 97 

1867 1917 

exceeding one-half of one per cent 
per month of the assessed value of 
the properties. 19 They shall like- 
wise establish schools, dispen- 
saries and other services necessary 
to the community. If the fac- 
tories are located within inhabited 
places and more than one hundred 
persons are employed therein, the 
first of the above-mentioned condi- 
tions shall be complied with. 

XIII. Furthermore, there shall 
be set aside in these labor centers, 
whenever their population ex- 
ceeds two hundred inhabitants, a 
space of land not less than five 
thousand square meters for the 
establishment of public markets, 
and the construction of buildings 
designed for municipal services 
and places of amusement. No 
saloons nor gambling houses shall 
be permitted in such labor centers. 

XIV. Employers shall be liable 
for labor accidents and occupa- 
tional diseases arising from work; 
therefore, employers shall pay the 
proper indemnity, according to 
whether death or merely temporary 
or permanent disability has en- 
sued, in accordance with the 
provisions of law. This liability 
shall remain in force even though 
the employer contract for the work 
through an agent. 

XV. Employers shall be bound 
to observe in the installation of 
their establishments all the pro- 
visions of law regarding hygiene 
and sanitation and to adopt ade- 
quate measures to prevent acci- 
dents due to the use of machinery, 
tools and working materials, as 
well as to organize work in such a 

"See Art. 27, Clause VII, second 
paragraph of 1917. 



98 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

manner as to assure the greatest 
guarantees possible for the health 
and lives of workmen compatible 
with the nature of the work, under 
penalties which the law shall 
determine. 

XVI. Workmen and employers 
shall have the right to unite for the 
defense of their respective interests, 
by forming syndicates, unions, etc. 

XVII. The law shall recognize 
the right of workmen and employ- 
ers to strike and to lockout. 

XVIII. Strikes shall be lawful 
when by the employment of peace- 
ful means they shall aim to bring 
about a balance between the vari- 
ous factors of production, and to 
harmonize the rights of capital and 
labor. In the case of public serv- 
ices, the workmen shall be obliged to 
give notice ten days in advance to 
the Board of Conciliation and 
Arbitration of the date set for the 
suspension of work. Strikes shall 
only be considered unlawful when 
the majority of the strikers shall 
resort to acts of violence against 
persons or property, or in case of 
war when the strikers belong to 
establishments and services de- 
pendent on the government. Em- 
ployees of military manufacturing 
establishments of the Federal Gov- 
ernment shall not be included in 
the provisions of this clause, inas- 
much as they are a dependency of 
the national army. 

XIX. Lockouts shall only be 
lawful when the excess of produc- 
tion shall render it necessary to 
shut down in order to maintain 
prices reasonably above the cost of 
production, subject to the approval 
of the Board of Conciliation and 
Arbitration. 



Constitution of Mexico 99 

1857 1917 

XX. Differences or disputes 
between capital and labor shall be 
submitted for settlement to a board 
of conciliation and arbitration to 
consist of an equal number of 
representatives of the workmen 
and of the employers and of one 
representative of the Government. 

XXI. If the employer shall 
refuse to submit his differences to 
arbitration or to accept the award 
rendered by the Board, the labor 
contract shall be considered as 
terminated, and the employer shall 
be bound to indemnify the work- 
man by the payment to him of 
three months' wages, in addition to 
the liability which he may have 
incurred by reason of the dispute. 
If the workman reject the award, 
the contract will be held to have 
terminated. 

XXII. An employer who dis- 
charges a workman without proper 
cause or for having joined a union 
or syndicate or for having taken 
part in a lawful strike shall be 
bound, at the option of the work- 
man, either to perform the con- 
tract or to indemnify him by the 
payment of three months' wages. 
He shall incur the same liability 
if the workman shall leave his 
service on account of the lack of 
good faith on the part of the em- 
ployer or of maltreatment either 
as to his own person or that of his 
wife, parents, children or brothers 
or sisters. The employer cannot 
evade this liability when the mal- 
treatment is inflicted by subor- 
dinates or agents acting with his 
consent or knowledge. 

XXIII. Claims of workmen 
for salaries or wages accrued dur- 
ing the past year and other in- 



100 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

demnity claims shall be preferred 
over any other claims, in cases of 
bankruptcy or composition. 

XXIV. Debts contracted by 
workmen in favor of their em- 
ployers or their employers' asso- 
ciates, subordinates or agents, may 
only be charged against the work- 
men themselves and in no case and 
for no reason collected from the 
members of his family. Nor shall 
such debts be paid by the taking of 
more than the entire wages of the 
workman for any one month. 

XXV. No fee shall be charged 
for finding work for workmen by 
municipal offices, employment bu- 
reaus or other public or private 
agencies. 

XXVI. Every contract of labor 
between a Mexican citizen and a 
foreign principal shall be legalized 
before the competent municipal 
authority and visied by the consul 
of the nation to which the workman 
is undertaking to go, on the under- 
standing that, in addition to the 
usual clauses, special and clear 
provisions shall be inserted for 
the payment by the foreign princi- 
pal making the contract of the 
cost to the laborer of repatriation. 

XXVII. The following stipu- 
lations shall be null and void and 
shall not bind the contracting 
parties, even though embodied in 
the contract: 

(a) Stipulations providing for 
inhuman day's work on account 
of its notorious excessiveness, in 
view of the nature of the work. 

(6) Stipulations providing for 
a wage rate which in the judgment 
of the Board of Conciliation and 
Arbitration is not remunerative. 



Constitution of Mexico 101 

1867 1917 

(c) Stipulations providing for a 
term of more than one week before 
the payment of wages. 

0) Stipulations providing for 
the assigning of places of amuse- 
ment, eating places, cafes, taverns, 
saloons or shops for the payment 
of wages, when employees of such 
establishments are not involved. 

(e) Stipulations involving a di- 
rect or indirect obligation to pur- 
chase articles of consumption in 
specified shops or places. 

(J) Stipulations permitting the 
retention of wages by way of fines. 

(g) Stipulations constituting a 
waiver on the part of the workman 
of the indemnities to which he may 
become entitled by reason of labor 
accidents or occupational diseases, 
damages for breach of contract, or 
for discharge from work. 

(h) All other stipulations im- 
plying the waiver of any right 
vested in the workman by labor 
laws. 

XXVIII. The law shall decide 
what property constitutes the fam- 
ily patrimony. These goods shall 
be inalienable and shall not be 
mortgaged, nor attached, and may 
be bequeathed with simplified 
formalities in the succession pro- 
ceedings. 

XXIX. Institutions of popular 
insurance™ established for old age, 
sickness, life, unemployment, acci- 

20 In the desire to adhere as closely 
as possible to the original, the term 
"popular insurance" has been used. 
It would seem, however, that in making 
use of the expression "Seguros Popu- 
lares," it was intended to convey the 
full connotation of the term "Social 
Insurance." (See "Social Insurance," 
Seager, 1910.) 



102 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 



1917 
dent and others of a similar char- 
acter, are considered of social 
utility; the Federal and State 
Governments shall therefore en- 
courage the organization of insti- 
tutions of this character in order to 
instill and inculcate popular hab- 
its of thrift. 

XXX. Cooperative associations 
for the construction of cheap and 
sanitary dwelling houses for work- 
men shall likewise be considered 
of social utility whenever these 
properties are designed to be 
acquired in ownership by the 
workmen within specified periods. 



TITLE VI 

Of General Provisions 

Art. 117. All powers not ex- 
pressly vested by this Consti- 
tution in the Federal authorities 
are understood to be reserved to 
the States. 

Art. 118. No person shall hold 
at the same time two Federal 
offices or one Federal and one 
State elective office; if elected to 
two, he shall choose between 
them. 

Art. 119. No payment shall 
be made which is not included 
in the budget or authorized by a 
law subsequent to the same. 

Art. 120. The President of 
the Republic, the Justices of the 
Supreme Court, Representatives 
and other public officials of the 
Federation who are chosen by 
popular election shall receive a 
compensation for their services, 
which shall be paid by the 
Federal Treasury and deter- 



TITLE VII 

Of General Provisions 
Art. 124. [Identical] 



Art. 125. [Identical] 



Art. 126. [Identical] 



Art. 127. The President of 
the Republic, the Justices of the 
Supreme Court, Representatives 
and, Senators and other public 
officials of the Federation who 
are chosen by popular election 
shall receive a compensation for 
their services, which shall be 
paid by the Federal Treasury 



Constitution of Mexico 



103 



1857 
mined by law. This compensa- 
tion may not be waived, and 
any law increasing or decreasing 
it shall have no effect during the 
period for which the functionary 
holds office. 

Art. 121. Every public offi- 
cial, without exception, shall, 
before entering on the discharge 
of his duties, take an oath to 
maintain this constitution and 
the laws arising hereunder. 

Art. 122. In time of peace no 
military authorities shall exer- 
cise other functions than those 
bearing direct relation to mili- 
tary discipline. No permanent 
military posts shall be estab- 
lished other than in castles, forts 
and arsenals depending directly 
upon the Federal Government, 
or in camps, barracks, or depots, 
established outside of inhabited 
places for the stationing of 
troops. 

Art. 123. The Federal au- 
thorities shall have exclusive 
power to exercise, in matters of 
religious worship and outward 
ecclesiastic forms, such inter- 
vention as by law authorized. 

Article 1. The church and 
the state are independent of each 
other. Congress shall not enact 
laws establishing or forbidding 
any religion. 

Art. 2. Marriage is a civil 
contract. Marriage and all 
other acts relating to the civil 
status of persons shall appertain 
to the exclusive jurisdiction of 
the civil authorities in the man- 
ner and form provided by law, 



1917 
and determined by law. This 
compensation may not be waived, 
and any law increasing or de- 
creasing it shall have no effect 
during the period for which the 
functionary holds office. 

Art. 128. Every public offi- 
cial, without exception, shall, 
before entering on the discharge 
of his duties, make an affirma- 
tion to maintain this constitu- 
tion and the laws arising there- 
under. 

Art. 129. [Identical] 



Art. 130. The Federal author- 
ities shall have power to exer- 
cise in matters of religious wor- 
ship and outward ecclesiastical 
forms such intervention as by 
law authorized. All other offi- 
cials shall act as auxiliaries to 
the Federal authorities. 

The Congress shall not enact 
any law establishing or forbid- 
ding any religion whatsoever. 

Marriage is a civil contract. 
Marriage and all other acts relat- 
ing to the civil status of indi- 
viduals shall appertain to the 
exclusive jurisdiction of the civil 
authorities in the manner and 
form by law provided, and they 



104 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
and they shall have the force 
and validity given to them by 
said laws. 

Art. 3. No religious institu- 
tions shall acquire real estate or 
capital secured by mortgage on 
the same, except only in the 
case set forth in article 27 of the 
Constitution. 

Art. 4. A simple promise to 
tell the truth and to comply 
with obligations entered into, 
shall take the place of the re- 
ligious oath with all its effects 
and penalties. [Articles 1-4 are 
amendments of September 25, 
1878.] 



1917 
shall have the force and validity 
given them by said laws. 

A simple promise to tell the 
truth and to comply with obli- 
gations contracted shall subject 
the promisor, in the event of a 
breach, to the penalties estab- 
lished therefor by law. 

The law recognizes no juridical 
'personality in the religious insti- 
tutions known as churches. 

Ministers of religious creeds 
shall be considered as persons 
exercising a profession, and shall 
be directly subject to the laws 
enacted on the matter. 

The State legislatures shall 
have the exclusive power of deter- 
mining the maximum number of 
ministers of religious creeds, ac- 
cording to the needs of each local- 
ity. Only a Mexican by birth 
may be a minister of any religious 
creed in Mexico. 

No ministers of religious creeds 
shall, either in public or private 
meetings, or in acts of worship or 
religious propaganda, criticise the 
fundamental laws of the country, 
the authorities in particular or the 
Government in general; they shall 
have no vote, nor be eligible to 
office, nor shall they be entitled to 
assemble for political purposes. 

Before dedicating new temples 
of worship for public use, per- 
mission shall be obtained from the 
Department of the Interior (Go- 
bernacion); the opinion of the 
Governor of the respective State 
shall be previously heard on the 
subject. Every place of- worship 
shall have a person charged with 
its care and maintenance, who 
shall be legally responsible for 



Constitution of Mexico 105 

1857 1917 

the faithful performance of the 
laws on religious observances with- 
in the said place of worship, and 
for all the objects used for purposes 
of worship. 

The caretaker of each place of 
public worship, together with ten 
citizens of the place, shall promptly 
advise the municipal authorities 
as to the person charged with the 
care of the said place of worship. 
The outgoing minister shall in 
every instance give notice of any 
change, for which purpose he shall 
be accompanied by the incoming 
minister and ten other citizens of 
the place. The municipal author- 
ities, under penalty of dismissal 
and fine, not exceeding 1,000 pesos 
for each breach, shall be respon- 
sible for the exact performance of 
this provision; they shall keep a 
register of the places of worship 
and another of the caretakers 
thereof, subject to the same penalty 
as above provided. The munici- 
pal authorities shall likewise give 
notice to the Department of the 
Interior through the State Govern- 
or, of any permission to open to 
the public use a new place of wor- 
ship, as well as of any change in 
the caretakers . Gifts of personalty 
may be received in the interior of 
places of public worship. 

Under no conditions shall stud- 
ies carried on in institutions 
devoted to the professional train- 
ing of ministers of religious creeds 
be given credit or granted any 
other dispensation of privilege 
which shall have for its purpose 
the accrediting of the said studies 
in official institutions. Any au- 



106 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

thority violating this provision 
shall be punished criminally, and 
all such dispensation of privilege 
be null and void, and shall in- 
validate wholly and entirely the 
professional degree toward the 
obtaining of which the infraction 
of this provision may in any way 
have contributed. 

No periodical publication which 
either by reason of its program, its 
title or merely by its general ten- 
dencies, is of a religious character, 
shall comment upon any political 
affairs of the nation, nor publish 
any information regarding the acts 
of the authorities of the country or of 
private individuals, in so far as the 
latter have to do with public affairs. 

Every kind of political associa- 
tion whose name shall bear any 
word or any indication relating 
to any religious belief is hereby 
strictly forbidden. No assemblies 
of any political character shall be 
held within places of public wor- 
ship. 

No minister of any religious 
creed may inherit, either on his 
own behalf or by means of a 
trustee or otherwise, any real 
property occupied by. any asso- 
ciation of religious propaganda or 
religious or charitable purposes. 
Ministers of religious creeds are 
incapable legally of inheriting by 
will from ministers of the same 
religious creed or from any private 
individual to whom they are not 
related by blood within the fourth 
degree. 

All real and personal property 
pertaining to the clergy or to 
religious institutions shall be gov- 
erned, in so far as their acquisition 
by private parties is concerned, in 



Constitution of Mexico 



107 



1857 



Art. 124. The Federal Gov- 
ernment shall have exclusive 
power to levy duties on mer- 
chandise imported, exported or 
passing in transit through the 
national territory, as well as to 
regulate at all times, and if neces- 
sary to forbid for the sake of 
public safety or for police rea- 
sons, the circulation in the inte- 
rior of the Republic of all kinds 
of goods, regardless of their 
origin; but the Federal Govern- 
ment shall have no power to 
establish or decree in the Federal 
District and Territories the taxes 
and laws to which Clauses VI 
and VII of Article iii refer. [As 
amended May 1, 1896.] 

Art. 125. All forts, barracks, 
warehouses, and other real prop- 
erty, destined by the Federal 
Government for public service 
or common use, shall be under 
the jurisdiction of the Federal 
authorities, in accordance with 
the law which the Congress shall 
issue on the subject; any of these 
establishments which may sub- 
sequently be acquired within the 
territory of any State shall like- 
wise be subject to Federal juris- 
diction, provided consent thereto 
shall have been obtained from 
the respective State legislature. 
[As amended October SI, 1901.] 

Art. 126. This Constitution 
and the laws of the United 



1917 

conformity with Article 27 of this 
Constitution. 

No trial by jury shall ever be 
granted for the infraction of any 
of the preceding provisions. 

Art 131. [Identical, with ex- 
ception of the references which 
in the 1917 text are to "Clauses 
VI and VII of Art. 117."] 



Art. 132. [Identical] 



Art. 133. [Identical] 



108 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
States of Mexico which shall be 
made in pursuance hereof and 
all treaties made or which shall 
be made under the authority of 
the President of the Republic, 
with the approval of the Con- 
gress, shall be the supreme law 
of the land. And the judges in 
every State shall be bound by 
this Constitution and by these 
laws and treaties, anything in 
the Constitution or laws of any 
State to the contrary notwith- 
standing. 



1917 



Art. 134. Bids shall be called 
for on all contracts which the 
Government may have occasion 
to enter into for the execution of 
any public works; these bids shall 
be submitted under seal and shall 
only be opened publicly. 



TITLE VII 

Of the Amendments to the Con- 
stitution 

Art. 127. The present Con- 
stitution may be added to or 
amended. No amendment or 
addition shall become part of the 
Constitution until agreed to by 
the Congress of the Union by a 
two-thirds vote of the members 
present and approved by a ma- 
jority of the State legislatures. 
The Congress shall count the 
votes of the legislatures and 
make the declaration that the 
amendments or additions have 
been adopted. 



TITLE VIII 

Of the Amendments to the Con- 
stitution 

Art. 135. [Identical] 



Constitution of Mexico 



109 



1867 



1917 



TITLE VIII 

Of the Inviolability of the Con- 
stitution 

Art. 128. This Constitution 
shall not lose its force and vigor, 
even though its observance be 
interrupted by rebellion. In 
case that through any public 
disturbance a Government con- 
trary to the principles which it 
sanctions be established, its force 
shall be restored so soon as the 
people shall regain their 'liberty, 
and those who have participated 
in the Government emanating 
from the rebellion or have coop- 
erated with it shall be tried in 
accordance with its provisions 
and with the laws arising under it. 



TITLE IX 



Of the Inviolability of the Con- 
stitution 

Art. 136. [Identical] 



TRANSITORY ARTICLE 

The present Constitution shall 
be published at once and sworn 
to with the greatest solemnity 
throughout the whole Republic; 
but its provisions, except those 
relating to the election of the 
supreme powers, Federal and 
State, shall not go into effect 
until the sixteenth of September 
next, when the First Congress, 
under the Constitution, shall 
meet. On and after that date 
the President of the Republic 
and the justices of the supreme 
court, who shall continue in the 
exercise of their functions until 
their successors are constitu- 
tionally elected and enter into 
the discharge of their duties, 
shall act in strict accordance 
with the provisions of this Con- 
stitution. 



TRANSITORY ARTICLES 

Article 1. This Constitution 
shall be published at once and a 
solemn affirmation made to de- 
fend and enforce it throughout 
the Republic; but its provisions, 
except those relating to the elec- 
tion of the supreme powers, 
Federal and State, shall not go 
into effect until the first day of 
May, 1917, at which time the 
Constitutional Congress shall be 
solemnly convened and the oath 
of office taken by the citizen chosen 
at the forthcoming elections to dis- 
charge the duties of President of 
the Republic. 

The provisions of Clause V of 
Article 82 shall not be applicable 
in the elections to be called in 
accordance with Article 2 of the 
Transitory Articles, nor shall ac- 
tive service in the army act as a 



110 



Constitution of Mexico 



1857 
Given at the Hall of sessions of 
Congress in the City of Mexico 
on the fifth of February, eighteen 
hundred and fifty-seven, the thir- 
ty-seventh of the Independence. 



1917 
disqualification for the office of 
representative or senator, pro- 
vided the candidate shall not have 
active command of troops in the 
respective electoral district. 

Nor shall the secretaries nor 
assistant secretaries of execu- 
tive departments be disqualified 
from election to the next Federal 
Congress, provided they shall de- 
finitively resign from office on or 
before the day on which the respect- 
ive call is issued. 

Art. 2. The person charged 
with the executive power of the 
Nation shall immediately, upon 
the publication of this Constitu- 
tion,' call for elections to fill the 
Federal offices; he shall see that 
these elections be held so that 
Congress may be constituted with- 
in a reasonable time, in order that 
it may count the votes cast in the 
presidential elections and make 
known the name of the person who 
has been elected President of the 
Republic; this shall be done in 
order that the provisions of the 
foregoing article may be complied 
with. 

Art. 3 . The next constitutional 
term shall be computed, in the case 
of Senators and Representatives, 
from the first of September last, 
and in the case of the President 
of the Republic, from the first of 
December, 1916. 

Art. 4. Senators who in the 
coming election shall be classi- 
fied as "even" shall serve only 
two years, in order that the Senate 
may be renewed by half every two 
years. 

Art. 5. The Congress shall in 
the month of May next choose the 
Justices of the Supreme Court in 



Constitution of Mexico 111 

1857 1917 

order that this tribunal may be 
constituted on the first day of 
June, 1917. 

In these elections, Article 96 
shall not govern in so far as the 
candidates proposed by the State 
Legislatures are concerned; but 
those chosen shall be designated 
for the first term of two years 
prescribed by Article 94- 

Art. 6. The Congress shall 
meet in extraordinary session on 
the fifteenth day of April, 1917, 
to act as an electoral college, for 
the computing of the ballots and 
the determination of the election 
of President of the Republic, at 
which time it shall make known 
the results; it shall likewise enact 
the organic law of the Circuit and 
District Courts, the organic law 
of the Tribunals of the Federal 
District and Territories, in order 
that the Supreme Court of Justice 
may immediately appoint the 
Inferior and Superior District 
and Circuit Judges; at the same 
session the Congress shall choose 
the Superior Judges and Judges 
of First Instance of the Federal 
District and Territories, and shall 
also enact all laws submitted by 
the Executive. The Circuit and 
District Judges and the Superior 
and Inferior Judges of the Fed- 
eral District and Territories shall 
take office not later than the first 
day of July, 1917, at which time 
such as shall have been temporarily 
appointed by the person now 
charged with the executive power 
of the nation shall cease to act. 

Art. 7. For this occasion only, 
the votes for the office of Senator 
shall be counted by the Board of 
the First Electoral District of each 



112 Constitution of Mexico 

1857 1917 

State or of the Federal District 
which shall be instituted for the 
counting of the votes of Represent- 
atives. This Board shall issue 
the respective credentials to the 
Senators-elect. 

Art. 8. The Supreme Court 
shall decide all pending petitions 
of "amparo," in accordance with 
the laws at present in force. 

Art. 9. The First Chief of the 
Constitutionalist Army, charged 
with the executive power of the 
Nation, is hereby authorized to 
issue the electoral law according 
to which, on this occasion, the elec- 
tions to fill the various Federal 
offices shall be held. 

Art. 10. All persons who shall 
have taken part in the Govern- 
ment emanating from the rebellion 
against the legitimate government 
of the Republic, or who may have 
given aid to the said rebellion and 
later taken up arms or held any 
office or commission of the fac- 
tions which have opposed the 
constitutionalist government, shall 
be tried in accordance with the 
laws at present in force, unless 
they shall have been previously 
pardoned by the said constitution- 
alist government. 

Art. 11. Until such time as 
the Congress of the Union and the 
State Legislatures shall legislate 
on the agrarian and labor prob- 
lems, the bases established by this 
Constitution for the said laws 
shall be put into force throughout 
the Republic. 

Art. 12. All Mexicans who 
shall have fought in the ranks of 
the constitutionalist army and 
their children and widows and all 
other persons who shall have 



Constitution of Mexico 113 

1857 1917 

rendered service to the cause of 
the revolution, or to public in- 
struction, shall be preferred in the 
acquisition of lots to which Article 
27 refers, and shall be entitled to 
such rebates as the law shall 
determine. 

Art. 13. All debts contracted 
by working men on account of 
work up to the date of this Con- 
stitution with masters, their sub- 
ordinates and agents, are hereby 
declared wholly and entirely dis- 
charged. 

Art. 14. The Departments of 
Justice and of Public Instruction 
and Fine Arts are hereby abol- 
ished. 

Art. 15. The citizen at present 
charged with the executive power 
is hereby authorized to issue the 
law of civil responsibility appli- 
cable to all promoters, accomplices 
and abettors of the offenses com- 
mitted against the constitutional 
order in the month of February, 
1918, and against the Constitu- 
tionalist Government. 

Art. 16. The Constitutional 
Congress in the regular period of 
sessions, to begin on the first day of 
September of the present year, 
shall issue all the organic laws 
of the Constitution which may not 
have been already issued in the 
extraordinary session to which 
Transitory Article number 6 re- 
fers; and it shall give preference 
to the laws relating to personal 
guarantees and to Articles SO, 82, 
88, 85, 86, 88, 107 and the latter 
part of Article 111 of this Con- 
stitution,. 

Signed at Quere'taro de Arteaga, 
January 81, 1917. 



114 Constitution of Mexico 

NOTES 

Art. 8, Line 2 — secular. It should be noted in this connection that public 
instruction imparted in the public schools of Mexico for the past thirty years 
has been largely dominated by the positivist theories of Auguste Comte, as 
applied by Dr. Gabino Barrera, a noted Mexican educator. 

Art. 8, Line 2 — ^primary. The educational system in Mexico is patterned in 
the main after the French. There are, accordingly, no high schools as these exist 
in the United States. Primary instruction is regulated by the federal govern- 
ment in the federal district and territories and by the states, and is generally 
subdivided into lower (."elemental") covering four years and higher (."superior"), 
comprising the fifth and sixth years. Fromhere pupils graduate to the " Escuela 
National Preparatoria" — an institution whose curriculum embraces high school 
and collegiate studies as given in the United States — prior to entering the profes- 
sional schools of law, medicine, engineering, etc. 

Art. 21, Line 4 and Art. 78, VI, 5 — Public Attorney " Ministerio Publico. " As 
it exists today, this institution dates back to the fourteenth century. Its duty 
is to see that the law is carried out, and it is, theoretically at least, independent 
of the judiciary. An important characteristic is that it does not require, as in 
the common law, any indictment or complaint before acting. Its most important 
function is in criminal cases where it is bound to prosecute all criminal offences, 
excepting only certain offences of a personal nature, such as slander, adultery, 
etc. In civil suits, its powers are more restricted and discretionary, although 
it is called upon to intervene in cases involving status, minors, bankruptcies, etc. 
In a word, it represents society. 

Art. 24, Line 7 — discharging in one instance. This ancient piactice differed from 
the Scottish verdict of " not proven," where only moral stigma attached, in that 
a reasonable presumption of guilt in first instance rendered the accused liable to 
a second trial if further evidence developed later. 

Art. 27, Line 6 — Public Utility. While the term "public utility" may be 
somewhat misleading, it is felt that " public use " may be even more so. The same 
expression ("Por causa de utilidad publico") is to be found in the 1857 Constitu- 
tion, and has always been interpreted by the courts of Mexico in the sense of public 
interest, as in the case of land expropriated for the surface work of a mine, etc. 

Owing to the importance that may attach to the changes made in the 1917 text, 
the original Spanish in each case is given: 

"Art. 27. La propiedad de las personas no puede ser ocupada sin su consen- 
timiento, sino por causa de utilidad pUblica y previa indemnizaciin" (1857). 

"Art. 27. . . . Esta (la propiedad privada) no podrd ser expropiada sino 
por causa de utilidad publica y mediante indemnizaci&n" (1917). 

Art. 27, Line 28 — Decree 0} January 6, WIS. This decree, promulgated by Car- 
ranza under this date, declares null ana void all alienations of lands, waters and 
forests made by the Mexican government or any inferior authorities thereof after 
December 1, 1876 which shall have illegally comprised properties formerly be- 
longing to, or occupied by, Indian communal settlements. The decree further 
grants these settlements the right to demand the restoration of these properties, 
and provides that the case be heard before the agrarian commissions or other ad- 
ministrative authorities, without any judicial recourse whatsoever, except only 
to demand the payment of an indemnity, in case the decision ordering such resto- 
ration be later invalidated by the courts. 

Art. 27, I, Line 18 — Zone. The principle restricting the right of foreigners 
to acquire real property within certain zones dates back many years and has found 
expression in several legislative enactments, among others the Mining Law of 
which went into effect on January 1, 1910. The text of the 1917 Constitution 
broadens considerably the scope of these limitations. The general rule hitherto 
obtaining in Mexico had been that foreigners might acquire real property within 
the prohibited zones on obtaining special permission from the executive; but 
the new constitutional provision establishes a principle of absolute prohibition. 



Constitution of Mexico 115 

Art. 27,111, Line 11— dependents. The word in the original ("asimilados") 
would certainly cover the English term tertiaries, or members of the third or 
worldly orders, Franciscan, Dominican, etc.; but it is apparently sufficiently 
sweeping to embrace societies of the laity not necessarily bound by religious vows, 
as for instance, the Knights of Columbus in the United States, and even persons 
serving in any religious ceremony, such as acolytes, etc. 

Art. 27, VII, Line 88 — Law of June 25, 1866. This measure is known as the 
"disamortization law." It provided for the taking of the numerous real proper- 
ties (landed estates, buildings, etc.) belonging to convents and other religious com- 
munities, Indian settlements, etc., and their disposition among private individuals. 
This was effected in various ways, as for example by adjudicating these proper- 
ties among the tenants, who were, however, held to acknowledge an indebtedness 
for their value and to pay the prior owner an annual interest, with the right of re- 
demption. In the absence of a tenant, the properties were auctioned and the 
purchaser assumed an obligation in favor of the owner, as in the preceding case. 
The law in question contained many other provisions, but these suffice to show 
the important place it occupies in the law of real property in Mexico. 

Art. 27, VII (/). Although this section embodies principles very similar to the 
" homestead " laws, it has not been deemed advisable to use this expression. The 
juridical conception of the "homestead" has no exact replica in the civil law, 
while the analogous term "patrimonium" embraces more than the common 
law "homestead. 

Art. 27, VII, Line 6 — 1876. This year marks the beginning of the first pres- 
idential term of General Porfirio Diaz, which brought the first large influx of 
foreign capital. 

Art. 88 of 1917. This wording follows the underlying principles of the 1857 
Constitution, with the important change of the class of aliens affected. By the 
1857 Constitution expulsion was possible only in the case of "undesirable" ("per- 
niciosos") aliens, while the 1917 text makes the provision applicable to any alien 
whose presence the executive may deem "inexpedient" ( incanveniente"). 

Art. 72, XXIV— Office of the Comptroller of the Treasury. The "Contadurla 
Mayor, " established by the act of June 6, 1904, is a bureau directly dependent 
upon the House of Representatives. Its purpose is to examine and audit the 
accounts submitted by the Treasurer of the Nation. The office extends its audit 
even to the acts of secretaries of executive departments, in matters pertaining 
to the expenditure of public funds. If it is proved that the expenditure was 
authorized and legally made, the "Contaduria Mayor" releases the official from 
all liability thereunder; if not, it is incumbent upon it to advise the proper 
functionary so that the corresponding liability may be exacted. The House of 
Representatives finally passes upon all governmental expenditures, on the basis 
of the report submitted by the "Contaduria Mayor. " 

Art. 107- — Ampo.ro. This unique feature of Mexican jurisprudence combines 
the essential elements of the extraordinary writs of habeas corpus, certiorari and 
mandamus. It is a federal procedure designed to give immediate redress when 
any of the fundamental rights of man are infringed by any authority, irrespective 
of category, or to excuse the obedience of a law or decree which has invaded the 
federal or local sphere. Its use is most extensive, embracing minors, persons 
absent abroad acting through a "next friend," corporations, etc. An important 
feature is that it merely gives redress to a specific person or entity, and never 
makes any general statement of law. It could, hence, never declare a law un- 
constitutional, though it would give immediate relief, so soon as the law in ques- 
tion acted upon any person. 

Art. 130 — Interior. Although the term " Gobernaci6n" is correctly translated 
by "Interior," it should be noted that the jurisdiction of these executive depart- 
ments in Mexico and the United States is wholly different. To "Gobernaci6n" 
pertain all matters of relationship between the federal and state governments, 
elections, etc. 



116 Constitution of Mexico 

Art. 130. The "Leyes de Reforma" constitute a group of organic laws which> 
as their name indicates, aimed to bring about certain social reforms, foremost 
among which was the complete separation of church and state. They represent 
the outgrowth of that movement, one of whose chief manifestations was the Con- 
stitution of 1857, although not incorporated in that document. The most impor- 
tant and radical provisions of these laws were enacted in 1859 while the Liberal 
Government was established at Vera Cruz. They were consolidated into a single 
law enacted during the presidency of Sebastian Lerdo de Tejada, under date of 
December 14, 1874. Its provisions form the basis of articles 3, 5, portions of 27, 
and Art. 130 of the Constitution of 1917, but many sweeping innovations have 
been introduced.